fleeting

adjective
fleet·​ing | \ ˈflē-tiŋ How to pronounce fleeting (audio) \

Definition of fleeting

: passing swiftly : transitory … the often fleeting nature of fame and fortune …— Tom Sinclair

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Other Words from fleeting

fleetingly \ ˈflē-​tiŋ-​lē How to pronounce fleetingly (audio) \ adverb
fleetingness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for fleeting

transient, transitory, ephemeral, momentary, fugitive, fleeting, evanescent mean lasting or staying only a short time. transient applies to what is actually short in its duration or stay. a hotel catering primarily to transient guests transitory applies to what is by its nature or essence bound to change, pass, or come to an end. fame in the movies is transitory ephemeral implies striking brevity of life or duration. many slang words are ephemeral momentary suggests coming and going quickly and therefore being merely a brief interruption of a more enduring state. my feelings of guilt were only momentary fugitive and fleeting imply passing so quickly as to make apprehending difficult. let a fugitive smile flit across his face fleeting moments of joy evanescent suggests a quick vanishing and an airy or fragile quality. the story has an evanescent touch of whimsy that is lost in translation

Examples of fleeting in a Sentence

I caught a fleeting glimpse of the comet. had a fleeting desire to jump into the cool lake but kept on hiking

Recent Examples on the Web

But for Umm Ahmed—who, for fear of retribution, asked to be identified only as umm, the Arabic word for mother, and Ahmed, the first name of her 14-year-old son—the memory is fleeting. Sophia Jones, Marie Claire, "The Truth About The Wives of ISIS," 4 Oct. 2018 Drivers heading north on I-5, just before the James Street exit sign, can catch a fleeting glimpse of its graceful, broad-rounded crown of branches that sweep downward to the ground. Erik Lacitis, The Seattle Times, "‘It has a story to tell’: How a descendant of Napoleon’s willow tree took root on a Seattle hillside," 30 Oct. 2018 The Orioles introduced top draft choice Grayson Rodriguez to the media late Tuesday afternoon, providing a fleeting glimpse of the team’s long-term future. Peter Schmuck, baltimoresun.com, "Schmuck: If Duquette is ready to focus on future and there's significant interest in Machado, what's the Orioles' holdup?," 13 June 2018 There is a fleeting moment in the last episode, barely a postscript, that reveals that the nonprofit The Innocence Project freed another man wrongfully imprisoned in Ada. Taylor Antrim, Vogue, "Is the True-Crime Fever Breaking? Watching Netflix’s John Grisham Documentary The Innocent Man," 14 Dec. 2018 In 2005, wages and overall gross domestic product were growing around 3% a year—the housing bubble meant this growth would be fleeting—and about 63% of U.S. adults had jobs. Josh Zumbrun, WSJ, "How Estimates of the Gig Economy Went Wrong," 7 Jan. 2019 The records also contain fleeting, and decidedly tame, glimpses of the budding relationship between Kavanaugh and his future wife, Ashley Estes, who was serving as a secretary to the president. Gregg Re, Fox News, "Kavanaugh docs from Bush admin highlight post-9/11 legal challenges," 10 Aug. 2018 There, in music full of nostalgia, Welser-Most called for wide swings in dynamics, sweeping lyricism, and swift tempos for an episodic experience not unlike the fleeting, haphazard nature of memory. Zachary Lewis, cleveland.com, "Cleveland Orchestra welcomes new year with stupendous farewell in Mahler's Symphony No. 9 (review)," 12 Jan. 2018 Captain James Kirk and Lieutenant Uhura, under mind-control by aliens in a totally ridiculous plot involving adherents to Plato, kiss for a few fleeting moments. Cyrus Farivar, Ars Technica, "50 years ago, Star Trek’s history was sealed with the Uhura-Kirk kiss," 22 Nov. 2018

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

1563, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for fleeting

Last Updated

16 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fleeting

The first known use of fleeting was in 1563

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More Definitions for fleeting

fleeting

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of fleeting

: not lasting : lasting for only a short time

fleeting

adjective
fleet·​ing | \ ˈflē-tiŋ\

Kids Definition of fleeting

: passing by quickly a fleeting instant

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More from Merriam-Webster on fleeting

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fleeting

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fleeting

Spanish Central: Translation of fleeting

Nglish: Translation of fleeting for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fleeting for Arabic Speakers

Comments on fleeting

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