extinct

adjective
ex·​tinct | \ ik-ˈstiŋ(k)t How to pronounce extinct (audio) , ˈek-ˌstiŋ(k)t How to pronounce extinct (audio) \

Definition of extinct

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : no longer burning
b : no longer active an extinct volcano
2 : no longer existing an extinct animal
3a : gone out of use : superseded
b : having no qualified claimant an extinct title

extinct

verb
extincted; extincting; extincts

Definition of extinct (Entry 2 of 2)

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Synonyms & Antonyms for extinct

Synonyms: Adjective

bygone, bypast, dead, defunct, departed, done, expired, gone, nonextant, vanished

Antonyms: Adjective

alive, existent, existing, extant, living

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Examples of extinct in a Sentence

Adjective

Many of these old traditions have since become extinct. a few overgrown ruins are all that remain of that once mighty but now extinct civilization

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

An animal like the now-extinct Macrauchenia is a perfect example. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "It Will Take Millions of Years for Evolution to Replace What We Might Lose in the Next 50," 16 Oct. 2018 Analysis of bones from now-extinct elephant birds could shed new light on the fate of the giant fowls. James Rogers, Fox News, "Elephant bird mystery solved? Discovery may explain demise of world's largest-ever birds," 13 Sep. 2018 One of the more far-fetched theories is that Nessie is a long-necked plesiosaur that somehow survived the period when dinosaurs became extinct. Nick Perry, BostonGlobe.com, "The legend of the Loch Ness Monster will be tested with DNA samples," 23 May 2018 Around 2,500 languages are in danger of becoming extinct, research shows, and some are spoken by as few as 30 people. Ann M. Simmons, latimes.com, "Hundreds of languages are in danger of vanishing. A new audio project aims to preserve the sound of some of them," 30 Apr. 2018 In their place, hyperbolic headlines have bugled society’s greatest hopes and fears for the technology, from saving near-extinct species to igniting a superbaby arms race. Megan Molteni, WIRED, "The WIRED Guide to Crispr," 27 Apr. 2018 On Ecuador’s Galápagos Islands, for example, scientists are trying to make a species of tortoise de-extinct by selectively breeding close relatives such that their genes veer toward those of the disappeared population. Elana Glowatz, Newsweek, "Northern White Rhino Extinction: Can Science Save the Subspecies?," 20 Mar. 2018 Environmental groups dispense with such nuance and claim the bird may soon be extinct. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Sage Grouse Sanity, At Last," 13 Dec. 2018 Also in the last year, the Christmas Island Pipistrelle, a bat found off the coast of Australia, was declared extinct. Umair Irfan, Vox, "7 things we’ve learned about Earth since the last Earth Day," 21 Apr. 2018

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

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for extinct

Adjective

Middle English, from Latin exstinctus, past participle of exstinguere

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Statistics for extinct

Last Updated

13 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for extinct

The first known use of extinct was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for extinct

extinct

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of extinct

: no longer existing
: no longer active

extinct

adjective
ex·​tinct | \ ik-ˈstiŋkt How to pronounce extinct (audio) \

Kids Definition of extinct

1 : no longer active an extinct volcano
2 : no longer existing Dinosaurs are extinct.

extinct

adjective
ex·​tinct | \ ik-ˈstiŋ(k)t How to pronounce extinct (audio) , ˈek-ˌ How to pronounce extinct (audio) \

Medical Definition of extinct

: no longer existing : lacking living representatives extinct prehistoric animals

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More from Merriam-Webster on extinct

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for extinct

Spanish Central: Translation of extinct

Nglish: Translation of extinct for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of extinct for Arabic Speakers

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