[ prez-uhns ]
/ ˈprɛz əns /


Nearby words

  1. preseason,
  2. preselect,
  3. preselection,
  4. preselector,
  5. presell,
  6. presence chamber,
  7. presence of mind,
  8. presenile,
  9. presenile dementia,
  10. presenility

Origin of presence

1300–50; Middle English < Middle French < Latin praesentia. See present1, -ence

Related formsnon·pres·ence, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for presence

British Dictionary definitions for presence


/ (ˈprɛzəns) /


Word Origin for presence

C14: via Old French from Latin praesentia a being before, from praeesse to be before, from prae before + 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

Word Origin and History for presence



mid-14c., "fact of being present," from Old French presence (12c., Modern French présence), from Latin praesentia "a being present," from praesentem (see present (n.)). Meaning "carriage, demeanor, aspect" (especially if impressive) is from 1570s; that of "divine, spiritual, or incorporeal being felt as present" is from 1660s. Presence of mind (1660s) is a loan-translation of French présence d'esprit, Latin praesentia animi.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper