distant

adjective

dis·​tant ˈdi-stənt How to pronounce distant (audio)
1
a
: separated in space : away
a mile distant
b
: situated at a great distance (see distance entry 1 sense 2a) : far-off
a distant galaxy
c
: having a great amount of separation between each other : separated by a great distance from each other : far apart
visiting distant places
distant campuses
d
: far behind
finished a distant third
2
: separated in a relationship other than spatial
a distant cousin
the distant past
3
: different in kind
from two very distant backgrounds
4
: reserved or aloof in personal relationship : cold
was distant and distracted
5
a
: going a long distance
distant voyages
b
: concerned with remote (see remote entry 1 sense 2) things
distant thoughts
distantly adverb
distantness noun

Examples of distant in a Sentence

In the distant past, dinosaurs roamed the earth. The day I left home is now a distant memory.
Recent Examples on the Web In his dual roles, Marez is filling Lincoln Heights with books that take readers to distant countries and eras, opening up new worlds. Claire O’Callahan, Los Angeles Times, 20 May 2024 The Detroit suburbs were geographically sprawling even then, but most people probably would have considered Romeo at the distant edge of that sprawl. David Peisner, Rolling Stone, 20 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for distant 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'distant.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Middle English, from Middle French, from Latin distant-, distans, present participle of distare to stand apart, be distant, from dis- + stare to stand — more at stand

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of distant was in the 14th century

Cite this Entry

“Distant.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/distant. Accessed 27 May. 2024.

Kids Definition

distant

adjective
dis·​tant ˈdis-tənt How to pronounce distant (audio)
1
a
: separated in space or time : away
b
: being at a great distance : far-off
distant galaxies
c
: far apart
2
: not close in relationship
distant cousin
3
distantly adverb
distantness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on distant

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