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First attested in 1545, from Latin extantem, extāns, present participle of extō, from ex- (out) + stō (stand).


  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈɛk.stənt/, /ɛkˈstænt/
  • (UK) IPA(key): /ɛkˈstænt/, /ˈɛk.stənt/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ænt, -ɛkstənt


extant (not comparable)

  1. Still in existence; not having disappeared.
    Synonyms: existent, existing; see also Thesaurus:existent
    Antonym: inextant
    extant manuscripts of the Old Testament
    • 1661, John Fell, The Life of the most learned, reverend and pious Dr. H. Hammond[1]:
      During the whole time of his abode in the university he generally spent thirteen hours of the day in study; by which assiduity besides an exact dispatch of the whole course of philosophy, he read over in a manner all classic authors that are extant []
    • 1843 April, Thomas Carlyle, chapter II, in Past and Present, American edition, Boston, Mass.: Charles C[offin] Little and James Brown, published 1843, →OCLC, book I (Proem):
      This English Nation, will it get to know the meaning of its strange new Today? Is there sense enough extant, discoverable anywhere or anyhow, in our united twenty-seven million heads to discern the same; valour enough in our twenty-seven million hearts to dare and do the bidding thereof?
    • 1948 May and June, J. Macartney Robbins, “A Railway Tour of Ireland”, in Railway Magazine, page 150:
      There are many narrow-gauge systems still extant.
  2. Still alive; not extinct.
    Synonyms: alive and kicking, living, vital; see also Thesaurus:alive
    Antonym: extinct
    extant birds
    • 1843 April, Thomas Carlyle, chapter VI, in Past and Present, American edition, Boston, Mass.: Charles C[offin] Little and James Brown, published 1843, →OCLC, book IV (Horoscope):
      I reckon that this one Duke of Weimar did more for the Culture of his Nation than all the English Dukes and Duces now extant, or that were extant since Henry the Eighth gave them the Church Lands to eat, have done for theirs! []
  3. (obsolete) Standing out, or above the rest.
    • 1663, Robert Boyle, “Title IX. Experiments in Consort, Touching the Bubbles from which the Levity of Ice is Supposed to Proceed.”, in New Experiments and Observations Touching Cold, or, An Experimental History of Cold, Begun. [], London: [] Richard Davis, [], published 1683, →OCLC, paragraph 1, page 95:
      [W]hereas in ſmall fragments or plates, the Ice, though it ſink not to the bottom of the water, will oftentimes ſink so low in it, as ſcarce to leave any part evidently extant above the ſurface of the water, in vaſt quantities of Ice, that extancy is ſometimes ſo conſpicuous, that Navigators in their Voyages to Iſland, Greenland, and other frozen Regions, complain of meeting with lumps, or rather floating rocks of Ice, as high as their main Maſts.

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  1. third-person plural present active indicative of extō