floating above or on the surface.

Nearby words

  1. supermotility,
  2. supermoto,
  3. supermundane,
  4. supernal,
  5. supernanny,
  6. supernational,
  7. supernationalism,
  8. supernationally,
  9. supernatural,
  10. supernaturalism

Origin of supernatant

1655–65; < Latin supernatant- (stem of supernatāns), present participle of supernatāre to swim or float above. See super-, natant Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for supernatant

British Dictionary definitions for supernatant



floating on the surface or over something
chem (of a liquid) lying above a sediment or settled precipitate
Derived Formssupernatation, noun

Word Origin for supernatant

C17: from Latin supernatāre to float, from super- + natāre to swim

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 supernatant



1660s, from Latin supernatantem (nominative supernatans), present participle of supernatare "to swim above," from super (see super-) + natare "to swim," frequentative of nare "to swim" (see natatorium).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper