absent

adjective
ab·​sent | \ ˈab-sənt How to pronounce absent (audio) \

Definition of absent

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : not present at a usual or expected place : missing was absent from class today sharing memories of absent friends She was conspicously absent [=her absence was very noticeable] at the meeting.
2 : not existing : lacking … danger in a situation where power is absent— M. H. Trytten a gene that occurs in mammals but is absent in birds
3 : showing a lack of attention to what is happening or being said : not attentive had an absent look on her face an absent reply

absent

verb
ab·​sent | \ ab-ˈsent How to pronounce absent (audio) , ˈab-ˌsent \
absented; absenting; absents

Definition of absent (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to keep (oneself) away He absented himself from the meeting.
ab·​sent | \ ˈab-sənt How to pronounce absent (audio) \

Definition of absent (Entry 3 of 3)

US, formal
: in the absence of (something) : without Absent any objections, the plan will proceed.

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Other Words from absent

Adjective

absently adverb
He replied absently to her question.

Synonyms & Antonyms for absent

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Preposition

Antonyms: Adjective

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Choose the Right Synonym for absent

Adjective

abstracted, preoccupied, absent, absentminded, distracted mean inattentive to what claims or demands consideration. abstracted implies absorption of the mind in something other than one's surroundings, and often suggests reflection on weighty matters. walking about with an abstracted air preoccupied often implies having one's attention so taken up by thoughts as to neglect others. too preoccupied with her debts to enjoy the meal absent stresses inability to fix the mind on present concerns due more to mental wandering than to concentration on other matters. an absent stare absentminded implies that the mind is fixed elsewhere and often refers to a habit of abstractedness. so absentminded, he's been known to wear mismatched shoes distracted may suggest an inability to concentrate caused by worry, sorrow, or anxiety. was too distracted by grief to continue working

Examples of absent in a Sentence

Adjective an absent father who is not home most of the time a gene that occurs in mammals but that is absent in birds a landscape in which vegetation is almost entirely absent He made an absent reply to her question as he continued to watch the TV. Preposition Absent any objections, the plan will proceed. Absent such an agreement we can go no further.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective This false allegation was never asserted by Garrett in the aftermath of the game, never suggested prior to the hearing, and conspicuously absent in the apology published by the Browns and adopted by Garrett. Chris Bumbaca, USA TODAY, "Myles Garrett told NFL in suspension hearing that Mason Rudolph used racial slur, per report," 21 Nov. 2019 The digital yuan, though, was conspicuously absent. Matthew De Silva, Quartz, "China’s digital currency is all about control," 14 Nov. 2019 The race was marked by an intensity often absent from local elections. Daniela Altimari, courant.com, "How did a tiny eastern Connecticut town become the state’s political epicenter this election cycle?," 10 Nov. 2019 Playing has helped eased the pain of being absent, Fitzpatrick said. Omar Kelly, sun-sentinel.com, "Dolphins QB Ryan Fitzpatrick facing a new challenge in his 15th NFL season — being away from his family," 27 Oct. 2019 But despite being absent from royal appearances this week, the Duchess of Sussex enlisted Prince Harry to help her with a special mission during one of his solo engagements. Halie Lesavage, Glamour, "Meghan Markle Had Prince Harry Deliver a Sweet Voicemail to Her Pen Pal," 13 Oct. 2019 Though the scope of the blackout is expansive, blanketing the Bay Area, chunks of the region remain conspicuously absent from outage maps: The seats of power for nearly every major tech giant. Wired, "Why the PG&E Blackouts Spared California's Big Tech HQs," 9 Oct. 2019 As Harper's Bazaar notes, her initial caption featured a heart emoji and two sets of clapping hands, which are now absent from the post. Emily Dixon, Marie Claire, "Irina Shayk Showed Off Her Legendary Runway Walk in a Video from Paris Fashion Week," 30 Sep. 2019 Black women are similarly absent from undergraduate engineering programs. NBC News, "How Jocelyn Jackson is changing the face of engineering," 9 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The vote was 6-0, with commissioner William Sendt absent. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Planning Commission recommends adding 32 buildings to list of historic properties in National City," 18 Sep. 2019 The vote was 4-0 in favor, with Mayor Rich Tran absent. Joseph Geha, The Mercury News, "Milpitas Council approves 40 condos, grants exception for no affordable units," 22 Aug. 2019 All three administrator contracts run through June 30, 2022, and were approved by the district board June 25 on a 4-0 vote, with member Dee Perry absent. Lilly Nguyen, latimes.com, "Laguna Beach school district approves amended contracts, with pay increases, for superintendent and 2 other administrators," 2 July 2019 The council approved the plan unanimously in a 9-0 vote with four council members absent. Andrew Kenney, The Denver Post, "Broncos Stadium development — sprouting from its parking lots — could stretch all the way to Federal Boulevard," 17 June 2019 Several senators, particularly on the Democratic side of the aisle, are now disinclined to support Haspel’s nomination, absent a stronger showing during future interviews with her. Shane Harris, Washington Post, "Gina Haspel’s nomination to head CIA faces some opposition in Senate," 13 Apr. 2018 The Spirit will again be impacted by the international break this weekend, with stars Mallory Pugh and Andi Sullivan absent. Julia Poe, Pro Soccer USA, "Orlando Pride to face Washington Spirit without international stars," 5 Oct. 2019 Concerns that PayPal might back away from the project intensified Thursday when the company was mysteriously absent from a meeting of Libra Assn. Los Angeles Times, "PayPal bails on Facebook-led Libra cryptocurrency dream," 4 Oct. 2019 Noticeably absent from the launch is T-Mobile, which initially offered pre-orders in April but had to give buyers’ refunds after Samsung scrapped the launch. Cnn.com Wire Service, The Mercury News, "Samsung brings the folding Galaxy phone to the US this week," 23 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Preposition Under no circumstances should Brett Kavanaugh be confirmed absent a full and complete investigation. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Kavanaugh confirmation derailed by sexual misconduct allegations: A list of his accusers," 27 Sep. 2018 Under no circumstances should Brett Kavanaugh be confirmed absent a full and complete investigation. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Kavanaugh confirmation derailed by sexual misconduct allegations: A list of his accusers," 27 Sep. 2018 Under no circumstances should Brett Kavanaugh be confirmed absent a full and complete investigation. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Kavanaugh confirmation derailed by sexual misconduct allegations: A list of his accusers," 27 Sep. 2018 Under no circumstances should Brett Kavanaugh be confirmed absent a full and complete investigation. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Kavanaugh confirmation derailed by sexual misconduct allegations: A list of his accusers," 27 Sep. 2018 Under no circumstances should Brett Kavanaugh be confirmed absent a full and complete investigation. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Kavanaugh confirmation derailed by sexual misconduct allegations: A list of his accusers," 27 Sep. 2018 Under no circumstances should Brett Kavanaugh be confirmed absent a full and complete investigation. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Kavanaugh confirmation derailed by sexual misconduct allegations: A list of his accusers," 27 Sep. 2018 Under no circumstances should Brett Kavanaugh be confirmed absent a full and complete investigation. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Kavanaugh confirmation derailed by sexual misconduct allegations: A list of his accusers," 27 Sep. 2018 Under no circumstances should Brett Kavanaugh be confirmed absent a full and complete investigation. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Kavanaugh confirmation derailed by sexual misconduct allegations: A list of his accusers," 27 Sep. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'absent.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of absent

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Preposition

1944, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for absent

Adjective

Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Latin absent-, absens, present participle of abesse "to be away, be absent," from ab- ab- + -sens, present participle (attested only with prefixes) of esse "to be" — more at is entry 1

Verb

Middle English absenten, borrowed from Anglo-French absenter, borrowed from Late Latin absentāre, verbal derivative of Latin absent-, absens absent entry 1

Preposition

derivative of absent entry 1

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Time Traveler for absent

Time Traveler

The first known use of absent was in the 14th century

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Statistics for absent

Last Updated

5 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Absent.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/absent. Accessed 15 December 2019.

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More Definitions for absent

absent

adjective
ab·​sent | \ ˈab-sənt How to pronounce absent (audio) \

Kids Definition of absent

1 : not present I missed a field trip when I was absent.
2 : not existing Trees were absent from the desert landscape.
3 : showing a lack of attention an absent stare

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More from Merriam-Webster on absent

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for absent

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with absent

Spanish Central: Translation of absent

Nglish: Translation of absent for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of absent for Arabic Speakers

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