keep up appearances, to maintain a public impression of decorum, prosperity, etc., despite reverses, unfavorable conditions, etc.: They tried to keep up appearances after losing all their money.
    make an appearance, to come; arrive: He didn't make an appearance until after midnight.
    put in an appearance, to attend a gathering or meeting, especially for a very short time: The author put in an appearance at the cocktail party on her way to dinner.

Origin of appearance

1350–1400; appear + -ance; replacing Middle English aparance < Anglo-French, Old French < Late Latin appārentia, neuter plural of Latin appārēns apparent
Related formspre·ap·pear·ance, nounre·ap·pear·ance, nounsub·ap·pear·ance, noun

Synonyms for appearance

Synonym study

2. Appearance, aspect, guise refer to the way in which something outwardly presents itself to view. Appearance refers to the outward look: the shabby appearance of his car. Aspect refers to the appearance at some particular time or in special circumstances; it often has emotional implications, either ascribed to the object itself or felt by the beholder: In the dusk the forest had a terrifying aspect. Guise suggests a misleading appearance, assumed for an occasion or a purpose: under the guise of friendship. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for reappearance

Contemporary Examples of reappearance

Historical Examples of reappearance

  • She must get away before her admirers demanded her reappearance on the platform.

    A Nest of Spies

    Pierre Souvestre

  • So he retraced his steps into the kitchen, curious as to the meaning of her reappearance.

    The Vagrant Duke

    George Gibbs

  • It came with the reappearance of the stranger round the corner of the barn.

    The Golden Woman

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • At the break of day she made her reappearance southeast of Nantucket.

  • But this reappearance shows that his detachment from the world was not complete.


    Joseph Conrad

British Dictionary definitions for reappearance



the act or an instance of appearing, as to the eye, before the public, etc
the outward or visible aspect of a person or thingher appearance was stunning; it has the appearance of powdered graphite
an outward show; pretencehe gave an appearance of working hard
(often plural) one of the outward signs or indications by which a person or thing is assessedfirst appearances are deceptive
  1. the formal attendance in court of a party in an action
  2. formal notice that a party or his legal representative intends to maintain or contest the issueto enter an appearance
  1. the outward or phenomenal manifestation of things
  2. the world as revealed by the senses, as opposed to its real natureCompare reality (def. 4)
keep up appearances to maintain the public impression of wellbeing or normality
put in an appearance or make an appearance to come or attend briefly, as out of politeness
to all appearances to the extent that can easily be judged; apparently
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 reappearance



late 14c., "visible state or form, figure; mere show," from Anglo-French apparaunce, Old French aparance "appearance, display, pomp" (13c.), from Latin apparentia, abstract noun from aparentem, past participle of apparere (see appear). Meaning "semblance" is recorded from early 15c.; that of "action of coming into view" is mid-15c. Phrase keep up appearances attested from 1760 (save appearances in same sense is 1711).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with reappearance


see keep up appearances; put in an appearance.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.