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From Middle English overshadwen, overshadewen, from Old English ofersceadwian. Calque of Latin obumbrō, from ob (over) + umbrō (shade). Equivalent to over- +‎ shadow. Compare Dutch overschaduwen, German überschatten.



overshadow (third-person singular simple present overshadows, present participle overshadowing, simple past and past participle overshadowed)

  1. (transitive) To obscure something by casting a shadow.
  2. (transitive) To dominate something and make it seem insignificant.
    • 2017 August 13, Brandon Nowalk, “Oldtown offers one last game-changing secret as Game Of Thrones goes behind enemy lines (newbies)”, in The Onion AV Club[1]:
      It’s surely consequential that Jon has a claim to the throne, whether he knows about it or not, but all of that is overshadowed by his immediate circumstances, which are that Jon Snow is leading a raiding party beyond the Wall to kidnap a wight.
  3. (transitive) To shelter or protect.