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Borrowed from Latin nascēns, nascēntis, present participle of nascor (I am born). Doublet of naissant.



nascent (not comparable)

  1. Emerging; just coming into existence.
    • c. 1624, Richard Crakanthorpe, “That the Church of Rome holdeth no doctrine by faith”, in Vigilius Dormitans, Romes Seer Overseene: Or, A Treatise of the Fift Generall Councell held at Constantinople, Anno 553 under Iustininan the Emperour, in the time of Pope Vigilius [] [1], London: Robert Mylbourne, published 1631, page 186:
      In the firſt, the Pope was but Antichriſt naſcent ; In the ſecond, Antichriſt creſcent ; In the third, Antichriſt regnant ; but in this fourth, he is made Lord of the Catholike faith, and Antichriſt triumphant []
    • 2021 December 29, Stephen Roberts, “Stories and facts behind railway plaques: Lancaster (1860)”, in RAIL, number 947, page 58:
      Locke has another plaque at Crediton station, on the line from Exeter to Barnstaple. It tells us that his "great number of unsurpassed works include the building of the nascent London & South Western Railway".
  2. (mathematics, obsolete) Describing a quantity of object that is starting to grow from zero or an infinitesimal beginning. Also the creation or identification of an infinitesimal delta.
  3. Describing the state, aspect, or practice of an abstract concept.
    • 1742, William Warburton, The Divine Legation of Moses Demonstrated, on the Principles of a Religious Deist, from the Omission of the Doctrine of a Future State of Reward and Punishment in the Jewish Dispensation.[2], 2nd edition, volume 2, number 1, London: Fletcher Gyles, book IV, section 5, page 222:
      For, as we have ſhewn, the original Uſe of it was to ſupport naſcent Hero-Worſhip.
  4. (chemistry) Of the state of an element at the time it is being generated from some compound or transitioning from one state to another; Newly released from a compound (especially hydrogen and oxygen) by a chemical reaction or electrolysis and possessing heightened reactivity; Newly synthesized (especially protein or RNA) by translation or transcription.
    • 1800, Humphry Davy, “Additional Observations and Experiments on the Respiration of Nitrous Oxide”, in John Davy, editor, The Collected Works of Sir Humphry Davy [] Researches, Chemical and Philosophical, Chiefly Concerning Nitrous Oxide, or Dephlogisticated Nitrous Air, and its Respiration.[3], volume 3, London: Smith, Elder and Company, published 1839, Of the Changes Effected in Nitrous Oxide, and Other Gases, by the Respiration of Animals, page 250:
      There are no reasons for supposing that any of the residual atmospheric oxygen is immediately combined with fixed or nascent hydrogen, or hydrocarbonate, in the venous blood at 98°, by slow combustion, and consequently none for supposing that water is immediately formed in respiration.
  5. (heraldry) Naissant.
    • 1874, G. Cameron, Charlie Lufton: An Autobiographical Novel, page 130:
      [] charges of blazonry, bends sinister and bends dexter, lions couchant, lions nascent, and []
    • 1931, Louis Carré, A Guide to Old French Plate:
      Marks of the makers : the initials of the maker and the arms of the town : a lion nascent with three flames.
    • 1978, Paul J. Vandevander, The Van Deventer Family, 1550-1977:
      [...] in chief a demi lion nascent gules.



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