Definition of transcendent
1a : exceeding usual limits : surpassingb : extending or lying beyond the limits of ordinary experiencec in Kantian philosophy : being beyond the limits of all possible experience and knowledge
2 : being beyond comprehension
4 : universally applicable or significant the antislavery movement … recognized the transcendent importance of liberty — L. H. Tribe
Examples of transcendent in a Sentence
a firm belief in angels, demons, and other transcendent beings
the star player's transcendent performance helped the team to a surprise victory
Recent Examples of transcendent from the Web
That moment was timeless, transcendent and intimate.
Denis Johnson, 67, the prize-winning fiction writer, poet, and playwright best known for his surreal and transcendent story collection Jesus' Son, has died.
Denis Johnson, the prize-winning fiction writer, poet and playwright best known for his surreal and transcendent story collection Jesus' Son, has died at age 67.
This is virtual reality as a new way of knowledge: a new and terrible kind of transcendent military power.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'transcendent'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
The Latin verb scandere means "to climb", so transcend has the basic meaning of climbing so high that you cross some boundary. A transcendent experience is one that takes you out of yourself and convinces you of a larger life or existence; in this sense, it means something close to "spiritual". The American writers and thinkers known as the Transcendentalists, including Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau, believed in the unity of all creation, the basic goodness of humankind, and the superiority of spiritual vision over mere logic. When we speak of the transcendent importance of an issue such as climate change, we may mean that everything else on earth actually depends on it.
Origin and Etymology of transcendent
Middle English, from Latin transcendent-, transcendens, present participle of transcendere
First Known Use: 15th century
TRANSCENDENT Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of transcendent for English Language Learners
: going beyond the limits of ordinary experience
: far better or greater than what is usual
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