View synonyms for descended


[ dih-sen-did ]


  1. having a specified ancestry or ethnic origin:

    She was the only daughter of a wealthy baron and his royally descended wife.

  2. having gone from a higher place or position to a lower one:

    The cooled and descended air then travels along the earth’s surface toward the equator to replace air rising from the equatorial zone.

    He was hailed as some descended godhead on earth—an avatar.

  3. inherited or transmitted, as through succeeding generations of a family:

    Early mammals generally possessed claws, and all existing cat species carry that descended trait.

  4. derived from something in the remote past, especially through continuous transmission:

    Traditional religions tend to focus on descended practice and ritual rather than on doctrine taught by a religious institution.


  1. the simple past tense and past participle of descend.

Discover More

Other Words From

  • un·de·scend·ed adjective

Discover More

Word History and Origins

Origin of descended1

First recorded in 1560–70; descend ( def ) + -ed 2( def ) for the adjective senses; descend ( def ) + -ed 1( def ) for the verb sense

Discover More

Example Sentences

Some evenings, whirlybirds of unknown origin seem to descend en masse.

While there’s no direct evidence that life descended from otherworldly microbes, amino acids and sugars have been found in outer space and within meteorites on Earth.

A sort of cease-fire descended on Kitwe, and Lungu’s Patriotic Front carried the decisive Copperbelt Province in the 2016 general election.

From Ozy

All the dogs in the study descended from the same common ancestor, but that original dog population split into at least five branches as it expanded in different directions.

Poles also help you brake when you’re descending, reducing the eccentric muscle contractions that damage your muscles and leave your legs sore the next day.

In 1974, 75 members of the group descended on a Copenhagen department store.

The du Pont family descended from Huguenot nobility in Burgundy, emigrating to the United States in 1800.

A fog of conspiracy—of logic against logic, as Orwell put it—has descended on every major event in the war.

At that point, a sphere lit up, resembling the landing of the UFO in E.T., and the overheard lights descended on the stage.

Since then, a black miasma of recursive vengeance has descended upon Iraq.

The road descended on the other side, and we followed it till we came unexpectedly upon a little circular park.

He made no further remark as they descended the darker section of the stair, and she could think of nothing to say to him.

And, Pedro preceding them, the young men gaily descended the stairs.

The active Capt descended, and seizing the substantial handle rang loudly.

She stood at the head of the stairs; she went down a few steps, and listened; then cautiously she descended.