[ ad-uhm-brey-shuhn ]
See synonyms for adumbration on
  1. a shadow or faint image of something:In the south, where the Tibetan plateau begins its gradual rise, we can just glimpse the hazy adumbration of its mountains above the undulating horizon.

  2. a foreshadowing of or precursor to something:Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy of 1808 serves in every way as an adumbration of the Ninth Symphony.The essay is a fascinating adumbration of an idea that would become the author’s obsession six months later.

  1. concealment or overshadowing:The haunting tune reflects the sad adumbration of the heroine’s emotional priorities as she rejects her prospective lover.

Origin of adumbration

First recorded in 1530–1540; adumbrat(e) + -ion

Words Nearby adumbration Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use adumbration in a sentence

  • But Sanjay seems today like an adumbration, rather than the acme, of authoritarian possibilities in India.

    Hold Onto Your Penis | David Frum, Justin Green | November 29, 2012 | THE DAILY BEAST
  • She would give things to the girls—he had a private adumbration of that; expensive Parisian, perhaps not perfectly useful, things.

    The Tragic Muse | Henry James
  • What was subconscious became conscious, what, back in the past, was a mere adumbration gloried out in Aurora splendours.

  • There seems to be little adumbration of the dark marginal lines of asper in populations from the lower Mississippi River drainage.

  • However, the soul evidently gave a form to this adumbration from the very beginning of things.

    Plotinos: Complete Works, v. 2 | Plotinos (Plotinus)
  • Our present life, in which we are not united with the divinity, is only a trace or adumbration of real life.

    Plotinos: Complete Works, v. 1 | Plotinos (Plotinus)