[ dahy-af-uh-nuhs ]
See synonyms for diaphanous on Thesaurus.com
  1. very sheer and light; almost completely transparent or translucent.

  2. delicately hazy.

Origin of diaphanous

1605–15; <Medieval Latin diaphanus<Greek diaphan(ḗs) transparent, equivalent to diaphan-, stem of diaphaínein to show through (see dia-, -phane) + -ēs adj. suffix) + -ous

Other words from diaphanous

  • di·aph·a·nous·ly, adverb
  • di·aph·a·nous·ness, noun
  • non·di·aph·a·nous, adjective
  • non·di·aph·a·nous·ly, adverb
  • non·di·aph·a·nous·ness, noun
  • sem·i·di·aph·a·nous, adjective
  • sem·i·di·aph·a·nous·ly, adverb
  • sem·i·di·aph·a·nous·ness, noun
  • un·di·aph·a·nous, adjective
  • un·di·aph·a·nous·ly, adverb
  • un·di·aph·a·nous·ness, noun

Words Nearby diaphanous

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use diaphanous in a sentence

  • A filmy and diaphanous creature was Mrs. Patton also—one could never have dreamed of so exquisite a black butterfly.

    Love's Pilgrimage | Upton Sinclair
  • Mrs. Patton was still in mourning, a filmy and diaphanous kind of mourning, beautiful enough to placate the angel Azrael himself.

    Love's Pilgrimage | Upton Sinclair
  • And if any lady is to wear garments in his vicinity, I assume that those garments are to be anything except diaphanous!

    In Search of the Unknown | Robert W. Chambers

British Dictionary definitions for diaphanous


/ (daɪˈæfənəs) /

  1. (usually of fabrics such as silk) fine and translucent

Origin of diaphanous

C17: from Medieval Latin diaphanus, from Greek diaphanēs transparent, from diaphainein to show through, from dia- + phainein to show

Derived forms of diaphanous

  • diaphanously, adverb
  • diaphanousness or diaphaneity (ˌdaɪəfəˈniːɪtɪ), noun

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012