[ik-skres-uh nt]
  1. growing abnormally out of something else; superfluous.
  2. Phonetics. (of a speech sound) inserted or added as a result of articulatory interaction or impetus, as the t-sound in sense (sents) or against (from Middle English ageynes), without grammatical or historical justification; intrusive; parasitic.

Origin of excrescent

1600–10; < Latin excrēscent- (stem of excrēscēns), present participle of excrēscere to grow out. See ex-1, crescent
Related formsex·cres·cent·ly, adverbsu·per·ex·cres·cent, adjectivesu·per·ex·cres·cent·ly, adverbun·ex·cres·cent, adjectiveun·ex·cres·cent·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for excrescent

Historical Examples of excrescent

British Dictionary definitions for excrescent


  1. denoting, relating to, or resembling an abnormal outgrowth
  2. uselessly added; not essential; superfluous
  3. denoting or relating to a speech sound or letter inserted into a word without etymological justification, such as the b in nimble
Derived Formsexcrescently, adverb

Word Origin for excrescent

C17: from Latin excrēscēns, from excrēscere, from crēscere to grow
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

Word Origin and History for excrescent

mid-15c., from Latin excrescentem (nominative excrescens), present participle of excrescere (see excrescence).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

excrescent in Medicine


  1. Growing out abnormally, excessively, or superfluously.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.