essence

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From French essence, from Latin essentia (the being or essence of a thing), from an artificial formation of esse (to be), to translate Ancient Greek οὐσία (ousia, being), from ὤν (ōn), present participle of εἰμί (eimi, I am, exist).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

essence (plural essences)

  1. ​The inherent nature of a thing or idea.
    • Landor
      The laws are at present, both in form and essence, the greatest curse that society labours under.
    • Addison
      Gifts and alms are the expressions, not the essence of this virtue [charity].
    • Courthorpe
      The essence of Addison's humour is irony.
  2. (philosophy) The true nature of anything, not accidental or illusory.
  3. Constituent substance.
    • Milton
      Uncompounded is their essence pure.
  4. A being; especially, a purely spiritual being.
    • Milton
      As far as gods and heavenly essences / Can perish.
    • Washington Irving
      He had been indulging in fanciful speculations on spiritual essences, until [] he had an ideal world of his own around him.
  5. A significant feature of something.
  6. The concentrated form of a plant or drug obtained through a distillation process.
    • essence of Jojoba
  7. Fragrance, a perfume.
    • Alexander Pope
      Nor let the essences exhale.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

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External links[edit]

Anagrams[edit]


French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Old French, from Latin essentia, from an irregular formation of esse ‘be’.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

essence f (plural essences)

  1. (philosophy, theology) essence
  2. petrol, gasoline
  3. essence, essential oil

Anagrams[edit]