ablative absolute


: a construction in Latin in which a noun or pronoun and its adjunct both in the ablative case form together an adverbial phrase expressing generally the time, cause, or an attendant circumstance of an action

Examples of ablative absolute in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Latin is seductive—the consummate logic of its syntactical cases, the mercurial dance of the ablative absolute. Cynthia Ozick, The Atlantic, 3 Aug. 2022

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'ablative absolute.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1631, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of ablative absolute was in 1631

Dictionary Entries Near ablative absolute

Cite this Entry

“Ablative absolute.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ablative%20absolute. Accessed 1 Mar. 2024.

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