dis·​tant | \ ˈdi-stənt How to pronounce distant (audio) \

Definition of distant

1a : 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
5a : going a long distance distant voyages
b : concerned with remote (see remote entry 1 sense 2) things distant thoughts

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Other Words from distant

distantly adverb
distantness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for distant



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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 Anyone living near a busy road or a city center will appreciate how this little switch can help eliminate annoying and distant hums. Mark Sparrow, Forbes, "This Affordable Condenser Microphone From Audio-Technica Won’t Let You Down," 9 Apr. 2021 But the messages from officials in Washington, D.C. about the vaccine felt distant and unrelatable. Alison Dirr, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Campaign featuring local residents seeks to overcome Milwaukeeans' hesitations about COVID-19 vaccine," 9 Apr. 2021 That is what makes neutrinos so valuable to the study of the universe's earliest, most distant and most violent events. Star Tribune, "Hunting ghost particles beneath the world's deepest lake," 8 Apr. 2021 And this isn’t some dim and distant millions of years ago [perhaps 20,000 years]. Michael S. Hopkins, The Christian Science Monitor, "Raptor rapture: A Q&A with Jonathan Meiburg," 6 Apr. 2021 But where the former are stuck in an emotionally-distant and passive aggressive rut, the latter are in a PDA-forward stage of newlywed bliss, a contrast that causes some friction between the otherwise affectionate sisters. Anne Cohen, refinery29.com, "Everything You Need To Know About The Vomit-Inducing Revenge Scene In Violation," 25 Mar. 2021 According to the mall’s website, families can have a socially distant and contactless visit with the Easter Bunny until April 3. Slone Terranella, Detroit Free Press, "Socially distant holiday photos, activities make a comeback for Easter weekend," 23 Mar. 2021 There is no land in sight, but a faint horizon line, distant and blue, divides the sea from the sky. The Economist, "For Claude Monet, familiarity bred respect," 19 Mar. 2021 Pass people on the sidewalk without stepping onto the grass to keep distant. Sniffle and sneeze without becoming frantic about our symptoms. Go to a doctor's office or busy building without pausing for a temperature check. Staff Report, USA TODAY, "Hug friends, go to concerts: 100 things we can't wait to do when the pandemic ends," 19 Mar. 2021

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

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

History and Etymology for distant

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

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Time Traveler for distant

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

14 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Distant.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/distant. Accessed 23 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for distant



English Language Learners Definition of distant

: existing or happening far away in space : separated by space
: far away in time : happening far in the past or far into the future
: having to do with something that is not related to what is happening where you are or at the present time


dis·​tant | \ ˈdi-stənt How to pronounce distant (audio) \

Kids Definition of distant

1 : existing or happening at a place far away a distant planet distant thunder
2 : far away in time the distant future
3 : not closely related distant cousins
4 : cold entry 1 sense 5, unfriendly a distant manner

Other Words from distant

distantly adverb

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Comments on distant

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