[tran-sen-duh nt]
  1. going beyond ordinary limits; surpassing; exceeding.
  2. superior or supreme.
  3. Theology. (of the Deity) transcending the universe, time, etc.Compare immanent(def 3).
  4. Philosophy.
    1. Scholasticism.above all possible modes of the infinite.
    2. Kantianism.transcending experience; not realizable in human experience.Compare transcendental(defs 5a, c).
    3. (in modern realism) referred to, but beyond, direct apprehension; outside consciousness.
noun Mathematics.
  1. a transcendental function.

Origin of transcendent

1575–85; < Latin trānscendent- (stem of trānscendēns), present participle of trānscendere. See transcend, -ent
Related formstran·scend·ent·ly, adverbtran·scend·ent·ness, nounsu·per·tran·scend·ent, adjectivesu·per·tran·scend·ent·ly, adverbsu·per·tran·scend·ent·ness, nounun·tran·scend·ent, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for transcendents


  1. exceeding or surpassing in degree or excellence
    1. (in the philosophy of Kant) beyond or before experience; a priori
    2. (of a concept) falling outside a given set of categories
    3. beyond consciousness or direct apprehension
  2. theol (of God) having continuous existence outside the created world
  3. free from the limitations inherent in matter
  1. philosophy a transcendent thing
Derived Formstranscendence or transcendency, nountranscendently, adverbtranscendentness, noun
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 transcendents



mid-15c., from Latin transcendentem, present participle of transcendere (see transcend).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper