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

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

Synonyms for digression


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Examples of digression in a Sentence

the professor's frequent and extended digressions are the stuff of campus legend
Recent Examples on the Web Ok, that was a digression, but some of you as parents feel me on that. Marshall Shepherd, Forbes, 21 Dec. 2021 Eternals as an ambitious digression from the core MCU arc. Scott Mendelson, Forbes, 24 Oct. 2021 Ditto, slight digression, the presumably theatrical sequels to Covid-era box office underperformers like Cruella, Jungle Cruise, Dune and Wonder Woman 1984. Scott Mendelson, Forbes, 26 Oct. 2021 That said, the epilogue’s stylish staging — highlighted by modest but impressive aerial acrobatics — is so virtuosic that the digression pays off. Washington Post, 19 Oct. 2021 Holbein, in a digression from Basel, had passed through the French court, and studied the drawing technique of Francis I’s new favorite, Jean Clouet, pioneer of the portrait miniature. Dominic Green, WSJ, 15 Oct. 2021 Haugen essentially shrugged off this concern, equating the digression with a gnat trying to distract from the elephant in the room. Washington Post, 5 Oct. 2021 That would all be nothing but a long historical digression but for the fact that those teachings are still alive and well, just dressed up in riotous, au courant leggings for the 21st century. The Salt Lake Tribune, 16 Sep. 2021 In Patchett’s hands, each subject becomes a springboard for thoughtful digression. Tiana Reid, Vulture, 31 Aug. 2021

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

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Last Updated

8 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Digression.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/digression. Accessed 26 Jan. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on digression

Nglish: Translation of digression for Spanish Speakers


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