noun sem·blance \ˈsem-blən(t)s\

: the state of being somewhat like something but not truly or fully the same thing

Full Definition of SEMBLANCE

a :  outward and often specious appearance or show :  form <wrapped in a semblance of composure — Harry Hervey>
b :  modicum <has been struggling to get some semblance of justice for his people — Bayard Rustin>
a :  a phantasmal form :  apparition
b :  image, likeness
:  actual or apparent resemblance <her story bears some semblance to the truth>

Examples of SEMBLANCE

  1. <tried to project some semblance of confidence even though public speaking terrified her>
  2. <a used-car dealer with only a semblance of honesty>


Middle English, from Anglo-French, from sembler to be like, seem — more at resemble
First Known Use: 14th century


Next Word in the Dictionary: semblant (noun)Previous Word in the Dictionary: semblable (noun)All Words Near: semblance
April 19, 2015
desiccate Hear it
to dry up or become dried up
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears