Yours, Etc.: Origins and Uses of 8 Sign-Offs


[uh-sent] /əˈsɛnt/
an act of ascending; upward movement; a rising movement:
the ascent of a balloon.
movement upward from a lower to a higher state, degree, grade, or status; advancement:
His ascent to the governorship came after a long political career.
the act of climbing or traveling up:
Three climbers attempted the ascent of Mount Rainier.
the way or means of ascending; upward slope; acclivity.
a movement or return toward a source or beginning.
the degree of inclination; gradient:
a steep ascent.
1590-1600; derivative of ascend, on the model of descent
Related forms
reascent, noun
Can be confused
ascent, assent, consent. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for ascent
  • During ascent, the diver stops at 150 feet and turns a valve to dump the helium he has been breathing.
  • We all know the formula: 10 pounds of extra weight on a 5 percent grade slows your ascent by half a mile an hour.
  • Until now scientists have theorized that tool making and meat eating set the conditions for the ascent of man.
  • We clipped our ropes onto a cable and began the ascent, a mixture of hiking and climbing.
  • Those controllers confer by radio with pilots about which predefined paths to follow for departure, ascent, descent and landing.
  • The new balloon's fast ascent gives it several advantages over slower types.
  • Old age is not an illness, it is a timeless ascent.
  • Leaving gear behind is not uncommon for experienced climbers who are making a quick ascent.
  • Their successful ascent may have provided a clue to another climber's mysterious fate.
  • The goal is to experience the wilderness with your family — not train for an Everest ascent.
British Dictionary definitions for ascent


the act of ascending; climb or upward movement: the ascent of hot gases
an upward slope; incline or gradient
movement back through time, as in tracing of earlier generations (esp in the phrase line of ascent)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for ascent

c.1610, "action of ascending," from ascend on model of descend/descent; "climbing" sense is from 1753.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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