presence

noun
pres·​ence | \ ˈpre-zᵊn(t)s How to pronounce presence (audio) \

Definition of presence

1 : the fact or condition of being present (see present entry 3)
2a : the part of space within one's immediate vicinity
b : the neighborhood of one of superior especially royal rank
3 archaic : company sense 2a
4 : one that is present: such as
a : the actual person or thing that is present
b : something present of a visible or concrete nature
5a : the bearing, carriage, or air of a person especially : stately or distinguished bearing
b : a noteworthy quality of poise and effectiveness the actor's commanding presence
6 : something (such as a spirit) felt or believed to be present

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for presence

Synonyms

company, sight

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of presence in a Sentence

Bacteria sense their neighbors and respond to the presence of others in the colony by exchanging small molecules and bits of proteins called peptides … — Susan Gaidos, Science News, 17 Jan. 2009 Though because it is a seaside town, there are more people now that it's summer.  … As well, their presence means that our few restaurants—dark through the snowy months—are open now, their lights burning merrily into the summer evenings. — Richard Ford, Wall Street Journal, 14-15 June 2008 The two authors suggest that war is better understood as a form of play than as a place of business, that Clausewitzian theory collapses into absurdity in the presence of atomic weapons. — Lewis H. Lapham, Harper's, September 2007 men should watch their language when in the presence of ladies the orchestra's musical director has a very stately presence
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

Perhaps the biggest indicator of Albert's continued presence on Victoria is the timeline. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "How Did Queen Victoria's Husband Prince Albert Die?," 4 Mar. 2019 New York state said that over the next 25 years Amazon’s presence would yield $186 billion in positive economic impact, including $14 billion in additional tax payments. Peggy Noonan, WSJ, "Welcome to New York, Amazon—Now Go Home," 21 Feb. 2019 As an endangered species, the animals face a number of hurdles to stay alive: the encroaching presence of humans, predators in certain parts of the park, and simply put, just not enough land. Gabe Bergado, Teen Vogue, "BBC Earth's "Dynasties" Pulls at Heartstrings With the Painted Wolves’ Fight for Survival," 12 Dec. 2018 That’s particularly damning, considering Facebook’s presence in Myanmar. Kurt Wagner, Recode, "Facebook removed hundreds more accounts linked to the Myanmar military for posting hate speech and attacks against ethnic minorities," 19 Dec. 2018 But in the face of Chrome's hegemonic presence, the field of competitors has gotten leaner, faster, and more interesting. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "A Year Ago I Ditched Chrome For Vivaldi and Never Looked Back," 26 Sep. 2018 China has sought to increase its presence in Afghanistan, including in dialogue with the Taliban, after 17 years of Western involvement that has left the country still at war. Christopher Bodeen, Fox News, "China says no plans to deploy troops to Afghanistan," 30 Aug. 2018 With its College of Art and Design and Lunder Arts Center, Lesley has notably increased its presence on the local visual-arts scene. Mark Feeney, BostonGlobe.com, "The PRC arrives in Porter Square," 12 July 2018 Last year, the Pentagon announced a new strategy in the nearly 17-year war, increasing the American troop presence in the country to roughly 14,000 while sending military trainers closer to the front lines. Thomas Gibbons-neff, New York Times, "American Soldier Is Killed in Afghanistan, the 2nd This Week," 12 July 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of presence

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for presence

see present entry 3

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about presence

Statistics for presence

Last Updated

15 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for presence

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for presence

presence

noun

English Language Learners Definition of presence

: the fact of being in a particular place : the state of being present
: the area that is close to someone
: someone or something that is seen or noticed in a particular place, area, etc.

presence

noun
pres·​ence | \ ˈpre-zᵊns How to pronounce presence (audio) \

Kids Definition of presence

1 : the fact or condition of being in a certain place No one noticed the stranger's presence.
2 : position close to a person The child is shy in the presence of strangers.
3 : a person's appearance or manner The actor has great presence on stage.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on presence

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

WORD OF THE DAY

the way words of a language are spelled

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A Green Quiz

  • shamrock
  • What is the best definition of green-eyed monster?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

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!