essence

[ es-uhns ]
/ ˈɛs əns /
|||

noun

the basic, real, and invariable nature of a thing or its significant individual feature or features: Freedom is the very essence of our democracy.
a substance obtained from a plant, drug, or the like, by distillation, infusion, etc., and containing its characteristic properties in concentrated form.
an alcoholic solution of an essential oil; spirit.
a perfume; scent.
Philosophy. the inward nature, true substance, or constitution of anything, as opposed to what is accidental, phenomenal, illusory, etc.
something that exists, especially a spiritual or immaterial entity.

Idioms

    in essence, essentially; at bottom, often despite appearances: For all his bluster, he is in essence a shy person.
    of the essence, absolutely essential; critical; crucial: In chess, cool nerves are of the essence.

Origin of essence

1350–1400; Middle English essencia < Medieval Latin, for Latin essentia. See esse, -ence
Related formsself-es·sence, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for essence

British Dictionary definitions for essence

essence

/ (ˈɛsəns) /

noun

Word Origin for essence

C14: from Medieval Latin essentia, from Latin: the being (of something), from esse to be
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