declivity

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noun de·cliv·i·ty \-tē\

Definition of declivity

plural

declivities

  1. 1 :  downward inclination

  2. 2 :  a descending slope

declivity was our Word of the Day on 07/21/2010. Hear the podcast!

Examples of declivity in a sentence

  1. the cabin is precariously perched on a declivity of the mountain's northern face

Did You Know?

Three different English words descend from "clivus," the Latin word for "slope" or "hill" - with the help of three Latin prefixes. Declivity combines "clivus" with the prefix de-, meaning "down" or "away." "Acclivity" uses "ad-" (which may change its second letter depending on the root word), meaning "to" or "toward." Hence, an acclivity is an upward slope. The third word has a figurative meaning in English: "proclivity" makes use of the prefix pro-, meaning "forward," and this word refers to a personal inclination, predisposition, or "leaning."

Origin and Etymology of declivity

Latin declivitat-, declivitas, from declivis sloping down, from de- + clivus slope, hill; akin to Latin clinare


First Known Use: 1612



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