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descended; descending; descends
: to pass from a higher place or level to a lower one
descended from the platform
: to pass in discussion from what is logically prior or more comprehensive
descends from the general to the specific
: to originate or come from an ancestral stock or source : derive
descends from an old merchant family
: to pass by inheritance
a desk that has descended in the family
: to pass by transmission
songs descended from old ballads
: to incline, lead, or extend downward
the road descends to the river
physiology : to conduct nerve impulses away from the brain
… lesions that interrupt the descending pathways from the cortex or brain stem produce weakness in voluntary movements …—Claude Ghez and John Krakauer
: to swoop or pounce down (as in a sudden attack)
a hawk descending upon its prey
: to appear suddenly and often disconcertingly as if from above
reporters descended on the candidate
: to proceed in a sequence or gradation from higher to lower or from more remote to nearer or more recent
Their scores were listed in descending order.
: to lower oneself in status or dignity : stoop
: to worsen and sink in condition or estimation
He descended into a deep depression.
descended to poverty
descend into chaos
: to pass from higher to lower musical notes
The harmony descends chromatically.
: to pass, move, or climb down or down along
descending the staircase
: to extend down along
a narrow scar descended her arm
Wait for the elevator to descend. The workers descended into the hole. A herd of goats descended into the valley. The airplane will descend to a lower altitude soon. Descending the mountain was even more dangerous than climbing it. The children descended the staircase silently. The path descends to the river. The stairs descended into the tunnel. See More
Recent Examples on the Web That would be nowhere near the more than 130,000 that descend on downtown for San Diego Comic-Con every year, but that’s not to say the upstart doesn’t have momentum. —San Diego Union-Tribune, 18 Feb. 2023 Or Sierra snow may melt quickly and descend in torrents so fast it can’t be captured in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. —Los Angeles Times, 20 Feb. 2023 Huezo captures another sort of communal vigil, another act of caretaking, when the village men descend on the night forest, watching for the timber poachers who have been cutting down and stealing trees by the truckload. —Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter, 17 Feb. 2023 Spring can bring a crowd in March, when spring breakers (of the family variety) descend on the shores and city. —Rebecca Deurlein, Forbes, 14 Feb. 2023 Caldera House Consider an escape to the desert oasis of Palm Springs before the hordes of influencers descend for Coachella in April. —Leena Kim, Town & Country, 6 Jan. 2023 Some critics, such as Paul Goldberger at the New York Times, took issue with Mr. Isozaki’s design of having visitors descend stairs to approach the galleries. —Brian Murphy, Washington Post, 30 Dec. 2022 Hosts in the know have the drinks ready to pour before the revelers descend. —WSJ, 15 Dec. 2022 Excavated for more than 30 years, its huge craters and twisted paths down which the trucks descend give the impression of a tropical hell. —Pablo Correa, Discover Magazine, 8 Dec. 2022 See More
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'descend.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
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