rem·​i·​nis·​cence | \ˌre-mə-ˈni-sᵊn(t)s \

Definition of reminiscence 

1 : apprehension of a Platonic idea as if it had been known in a previous existence

2a : recall to mind of a long-forgotten experience or fact

b : the process or practice of thinking or telling about past experiences

3a : a remembered experience

b : an account of a memorable experience often used in plural

4 : something so like another as to be regarded as an unconscious repetition, imitation, or survival

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Synonyms for reminiscence


memory, mind, recollection, remembrance

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Choose the Right Synonym for reminiscence

memory, remembrance, recollection, reminiscence mean the capacity for or the act of remembering, or the thing remembered. memory applies both to the power of remembering and to what is remembered. gifted with a remarkable memory that incident was now just a distant memory remembrance applies to the act of remembering or the fact of being remembered. any remembrance of his deceased wife was painful recollection adds an implication of consciously bringing back to mind often with some effort. after a moment's recollection he produced the name reminiscence suggests the recalling of usually pleasant incidents, experiences, or feelings from a remote past. my grandmother's reminiscences of her Iowa girlhood

Examples of reminiscence in a Sentence

his reminiscences about the war were painful to hear we wondered whether she could trust her reminiscence of events that happened so long ago

Recent Examples on the Web

That something unique was the thoughts and reminiscences of Benjamin Murmelstein, who died in 1989. Kenneth Turan,, "Appreciation: Director Claude Lanzmann's 'Shoah' changed our understanding of the Holocaust — and altered documentary filmmaking," 6 July 2018 Thirty-two years after Mock’s death, reminiscences would sometimes conflict and that intrigued Purnell, who would have to decide which, if any, version of a story to keep. Pam Grady, San Francisco Chronicle, "‘Dances of Ed Mock’ biopic gives new life to choreographer’s work," 14 June 2018 Usually the two former lawyers would mix business talk with reminiscences of their past corporate conquests, watch a little baseball or CNBC, and gaze at the giant aquariums of Sumner’s beloved saltwater fish. Keach Hagey, The Hollywood Reporter, "The Moment the War for Sumner Redstone’s Media Empire Really Began (Exclusive Book Excerpt)," 26 June 2018 Despite all these fond reminiscences, the men's relationship remains largely hidden. J.r. Jones, Chicago Reader, "Chicago’s Wax Trax! Records portrayed as a romance etched in vinyl in new documentary," 4 June 2018 The 13-track Magic, whose producers include John Fields (Goo Goo Dolls, All Time Low) and Tony Hoffer (Beck, Air, M83), continues Rector's positive vibes for which he's become known, this time with a hint of reminiscence. Taylor Weatherby, Billboard, "Ben Rector Announces New Album 'Magic,' Unveils Nostalgic Track 'Old Friends': Premiere," 18 May 2018 Still, the humour and eccentricity of Mr Lynch’s own reminiscences and observations are the book’s main pleasure. The Economist, "David Lynch’s memoir illuminates the origins of his art," 14 June 2018 Most of the documentary was shot with an iPad, and the interview subjects are poorly lit, the video's production values secondary to the reminiscences. Steve Heisler, Chicago Reader, "Uncle Fun, the beloved Lakeview novelty shop, gets its own documentary," 7 June 2018 The story has more in common with Bradbury’s 1957 novel Dandelion Wine, which combines reminiscences of growing up in a middle American small town with elements of whimsical fantasy. Noel Murray, The Verge, "Why a Ray Bradbury Twilight Zone episode is the perfect thing to stream this weekend," 18 May 2018

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

1589, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of reminiscence was in 1589

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More Definitions for reminiscence



English Language Learners Definition of reminiscence

: a story that someone tells about something that happened in the past

: the act of remembering or telling about past experiences


rem·​i·​nis·​cence | \ˌre-mə-ˈni-sᵊns \

Kids Definition of reminiscence

1 : the act of recalling or telling of a past experience

2 reminiscences plural : a story of a person's memorable experiences

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