vestige

noun
ves·​tige | \ ˈve-stij How to pronounce vestige (audio) \

Definition of vestige

1a(1) : a trace, mark, or visible sign left by something (such as an ancient city or a condition or practice) vanished or lost
(2) : the smallest quantity or trace
2 : a bodily part or organ that is small and degenerate or imperfectly developed in comparison to one more fully developed in an earlier stage of the individual, in a past generation, or in closely related forms

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Synonyms for vestige

Synonyms

echo, ghost, relic, shadow, trace

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Choose the Right Synonym for vestige

trace, vestige, track mean a perceptible sign made by something that has passed. trace may suggest any line, mark, or discernible effect. the killer left no traces vestige applies to a tangible reminder such as a fragment or remnant of what is past and gone. boulders that are vestiges of the last ice age track implies a continuous line that can be followed. the fossilized tracks of dinosaurs

Vestige, Trace, and Track

Vestige is derived via Middle French from the Latin noun vestigium, meaning "footstep, footprint, or track." Like trace and track, vestige can refer to a perceptible sign made by something that has now passed. Of the three words, vestige is the most likely to apply to a tangible reminder, such as a fragment or remnant of what is past and gone. Trace, on the other hand, may suggest any line, mark, or discernible effect ("the snowfield is pockmarked with the traces of caribou"). Track implies a continuous line that can be followed ("the fossilized tracks of dinosaurs").

Examples of vestige in a Sentence

a few strange words carved on a tree were the only vestige of the lost colony of Roanoke the fossilized vestige of a dinosaur that traversed that muddy landscape millions of years ago

Recent Examples on the Web

The guys help Wesley make peace with his past and shed the last vestiges of his old self with confidence. Gerrad Hall, EW.com, "A man paralyzed by gun violence, Jonathan's former teacher — meet the Queer Eye season 4 'heroes'," 10 July 2019 In 1995, after 42 years, the last vestiges of Eisenhower's executive order were finally overturned, when President Bill Clinton signed an executive order rescinding the policy. CBS News, "The lavender scare: How the federal government purged gay employees," 9 June 2019 From disco ball shine to gravity-defying hair, these five catwalkers shed all vestiges of restraint and took their beauty to the max. Vogue, "Camp Beauty: Dara, Paloma Elsesser, and More Go Maximalist for the Annual Pre-Met Party," 6 May 2019 There are vestiges of better days or signs of people carrying on, finding a way forward. Washington Post, "Venezuela’s misery doesn’t even spare the dead in Maracaibo," 19 June 2019 It‘s also worth noting that the Cavs are sitting close to luxury-tax territory, with vestiges of the LeBron era still on payroll. Jeremy Woo, SI.com, "Biggest Needs for All 30 Teams in the 2019 NBA Draft," 6 June 2019 The last vestiges of the Virgin America brand are now aviation history, bringing a formal end to Richard Branson’s brash, groundbreaking effort to put some European flair-replete with cheeky branding and mood-lighting-into U.S. skies. Justin Bachman, Anchorage Daily News, "Virgin America vanishes into Alaska Airlines - along with Branson’s US dream," 4 June 2019 The 27-story Hong Kong tower is in the waterfront district of Wan Chai, a bustling commercial area with some of the oldest vestiges of the city’s Colonial era. Jeffrey Bauman, ELLE Decor, "Is This New St. Regis in New York or Hong Kong?," 17 May 2019 The crowd was a heady mix of colleagues, clients and friends who ran the gamut from fresh-faced décor up and comers to the last vestiges of the Swifty’s set. Steven Stolman, Town & Country, "Inside Mario Buatta's Final High Society Farewell," 23 Jan. 2019

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

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

History and Etymology for vestige

Middle English, from Middle French, from Latin vestigium footstep, footprint, track, vestige

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Statistics for vestige

Last Updated

15 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for vestige

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

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More Definitions for vestige

vestige

noun

English Language Learners Definition of vestige

formal
: the last small part that remains of something that existed before
: the smallest possible amount of something

vestige

noun
ves·​tige | \ ˈve-stij How to pronounce vestige (audio) \

Kids Definition of vestige

: a tiny amount or visible sign of something lost or vanished : trace We stayed outside to enjoy the last vestiges of daylight.

vestige

noun
ves·​tige | \ ˈves-tij How to pronounce vestige (audio) \

Medical Definition of vestige

: a bodily part or organ that is small and degenerate or imperfectly developed in comparison to one more fully developed in an earlier stage of the individual, in a past generation, or in closely related forms

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More from Merriam-Webster on vestige

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for vestige

Spanish Central: Translation of vestige

Nglish: Translation of vestige for Spanish Speakers

Comments on vestige

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