digression

noun
di·​gres·​sion | \ dī-ˈgre-shən How to pronounce digression (audio) , də- \

Definition of digression

1 : the act or an instance of leaving the main subject in an extended written or verbal expression of thought : the act or an instance of digressing in a discourse or other usually organized literary work Every place Hamilton, his parents, or his wife visited over a century's time is described at length; everyone he met merits at least a minor biographical digression.— Willard Sterne Randall
2 archaic : a going aside

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Other Words from digression

digressional \ dī-​ˈgresh-​nəl How to pronounce digression (audio) , də-​ , -​ə-​nᵊl \ adjective
digressionary \ dī-​ˈgre-​shə-​ˌner-​ē How to pronounce digression (audio) , də-​ \ adjective

Examples of digression in a Sentence

the professor's frequent and extended digressions are the stuff of campus legend
Recent Examples on the Web The other axis is a chain of observations, each a digression from the last, about Leiris’s neighborhood. Sasha Frere-jones, The New Yorker, "The Man Who Saw Through Himself," 9 Dec. 2020 That does lead into a nice digression about Jane Lynch being ubiquitous on TV. Andy Hoglund, EW.com, "Saturday Night Live recap: John Mulaney returns for Halloween episode with musical guest the Strokes," 1 Nov. 2020 But the pros and cons of these specific policies are really outside the scope of this book, and as a result these sections feel like a digression. Robert Verbruggen, National Review, "Genetics Affect Intelligence: Confronting the Consequences, from the Left," 17 Sep. 2020 Boughton originally proposed the idea, in jest, that the city name its sewage plant after the comedian in response to Oliver’s anti-Danbury tirade on his show, a digression from a segment on why people of color are excluded from juries. Alexa Philippou, courant.com, "Danbury mayor accepts HBO host John Oliver’s proposal to rename sewage plant after him, with one condition," 6 Sep. 2020 There are these fascinating digressions into the way the CIA has attempted to influence people through culture and about the organization itself. Clark Collis, EW.com, "Did the CIA write the Scorpions' hit 'Wind of Change'? A new podcast investigates," 15 May 2020 More than a quarter of its pages are essays on French history, morality and other digressions. Brandon Griggs, CNN, "15 epic books you may finally have time to read now," 10 May 2020 And that was all before his digression into the potential healing powers of disinfectants. Jonathan Martin, BostonGlobe.com, "Nervous Republicans see Trump sinking, and taking Senate with him," 25 Apr. 2020 These digressions are absorbing but all too brief, as Bascomb hurries to the next starting line. Nick Donofrio, New York Times, "The Jewish Race-Car Driver Who Outpaced the Nazis," 17 Mar. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for digression

see digress

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Time Traveler for digression

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

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Statistics for digression

Last Updated

21 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Digression.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/digression. Accessed 17 Jan. 2021.

More from Merriam-Webster on digression

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for digression

Nglish: Translation of digression for Spanish Speakers

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