1

eclipse

play
noun \ i-ˈklips \

Definition of eclipse

1 a :the total or partial obscuring of one celestial body by another
b :the passing into the shadow of a celestial body — compare occultation, transit
2 :a falling into obscurity or decline; also :the state of being eclipsed
  • his reputation has fallen into eclipse
3 :the state of being in eclipse plumage

Examples of eclipse in a Sentence

  1. an eclipse of the sun

  2. The popularity of television led to the eclipse of the radio drama.

  3. an artist whose reputation has long been in eclipse

Recent Examples of eclipse from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'eclipse.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Illustration of eclipse

Origin and Etymology of eclipse

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin eclipsis, from Greek ekleipsis, from ekleipein to omit, fail, suffer eclipse, from ex- + leipein to leave — more at loan


2

eclipse

verb

Definition of eclipse

eclipsed; eclipsing
transitive verb
:to cause an eclipse of: such as
b :to reduce in importance or repute
c :surpass
  • her score eclipsed the old record

Examples of eclipse in a Sentence

  1. The sun was partially eclipsed by the moon.

  2. Train travel was eclipsed by the growth of commercial airlines.

Recent Examples of eclipse from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'eclipse.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of eclipse

13th century



ECLIPSE Defined for English Language Learners

eclipse

play
noun

Definition of eclipse for English Language Learners

  • : an occasion when the sun looks like it is completely or partially covered with a dark circle because the moon is between the sun and the Earth

  • : an occasion when the moon looks like it is completely or partially covered with a dark circle because the Earth's shadow is on it

  • : a loss of power, success, popularity, etc.


eclipse

verb

Definition of eclipse for English Language Learners

  • : to cause an eclipse of (the sun or moon)

  • : to make (something) less important or popular

  • : to do or be much better than (someone or something)


ECLIPSE Defined for Kids

1

eclipse

play
noun \ i-ˈklips \

Definition of eclipse for Students

1 :a complete or partial hiding of the sun caused by the moon's passing between the sun and the earth
2 :a darkening of the moon caused by its entering the shadow of the earth
3 :the hiding of any heavenly body by another

2

eclipse

verb

Definition of eclipse for Students

eclipsed; eclipsing
1 :to cause an eclipse of
  • The sun was eclipsed by the moon.
2 :to be or do much better than :outshine The racer's time eclipsed the old record.


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up eclipse? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

to curse or denounce

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Merriam-Webster's New Words Quiz—Fall 2017 Edition!

  • young-plant-shoots
  • Which of the following is a new sense of the word bunny?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!