dec·​a·​dence | \ ˈde-kə-dən(t)s How to pronounce decadence (audio) also di-ˈkā- \

Definition of decadence

1 : the process of becoming decadent : the quality or state of being decadent the decadence of modern society escape the decadence that attends upon old age— G. L. Dickinson
2 : a period of decline

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Choose the Right Synonym for decadence

deterioration, degeneration, decadence, decline mean the falling from a higher to a lower level in quality, character, or vitality. deterioration implies generally the impairment of value or usefulness. the deterioration of the house through neglect degeneration stresses physical, intellectual, or especially moral retrogression. the degeneration of their youthful idealism into cynicism decadence presupposes a reaching and passing the peak of development and implies a turn downward with a consequent loss in vitality or energy. cited love of luxury as a sign of cultural decadence decline differs from decadence in suggesting a more markedly downward direction and greater momentum as well as more obvious evidence of deterioration. the meteoric decline of his career after the scandal

Examples of decadence in a Sentence

The book condemns the decadence of modern society. a symbol of the decadence of their once-mighty civilization
Recent Examples on the Web The '80s soap opera, in the hands of its legendary costume designer, the late Nolan Miller, epitomized everything that era stood for: decadence and wealth, glamour and power. Leena Kim, Town & Country, "Why Dynasty-Style Shoulders Are Making a Comeback," 9 Nov. 2020 Manta notes that this will also be the night of the full moon in Taurus, which is all about sensuality and decadence. Molly Longman,, "Spend The ‘Extra Hour’ From Daylight Saving Time On Sex, Not An Existential Crisis," 30 Oct. 2020 Ben & Jerry’s already had funky flavors, and Haagen-Dazs already captured the demand for decadence. Josh Linkner, Detroit Free Press, "Boozy yet creative idea from ice cream maker is something to steal," 24 Oct. 2020 In that video, Bieber struts around a house party at a mansion, and lip synchs lyrics about promiscuity, alcohol use and the decadence of fame. Giulia Heyward And Jeanne Bonner, CNN, "Justin Bieber's 'Lonely' shows the dark side of childhood stardom," 17 Oct. 2020 My younger self’s association of split screens with campy decadence was, of course, a limited perspective. Laurence Scott, Wired, "How We Came to Live in a Split-Screen Reality," 11 Oct. 2020 That broad capability—decadence and drivability together, as never before—made the Ghost widely appealing among this admittedly niche-buying segment: the .01% of people able and eager to spend more than $300,000 on a car. Hannah Elliott,, "Rolls-Royce Tones Down $332,500 Ghost in Latest Bid for Relevance," 30 Sep. 2020 Titus Livius compared this ideal with the customs of his time, becoming a prophet of Roman decadence. Itxu Díaz, National Review, "Why Does the Left Hate the Humanities?," 19 Sep. 2020 Needless to say, the party at home is going to look a little different than the decadence and depravity of the infield. Lucas Aulbach, The Courier-Journal, "From protests to races, here's what's happening in Louisville for the 2020 Kentucky Derby," 4 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'decadence.' 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 decadence

1530, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for decadence

Middle French, from Medieval Latin decadentia, from Late Latin decadent-, decadens, present participle of decadere to fall, sink — more at decay entry 1

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Time Traveler for decadence

Time Traveler

The first known use of decadence was in 1530

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Statistics for decadence

Last Updated

19 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Decadence.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Nov. 2020.

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How to pronounce decadence (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of decadence

disapproving : behavior that shows low morals and a great love of pleasure, money, fame, etc.

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