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ephemeral

[ih-fem-er-uh l] /ɪˈfɛm ər əl/
adjective
1.
lasting a very short time; short-lived; transitory:
the ephemeral joys of childhood.
2.
lasting but one day:
an ephemeral flower.
noun
3.
anything short-lived, as certain insects.
Origin of ephemeral
1570-1580
1570-80; < Greek ephḗmer(os) short-lived, lasting but a day (ep- ep- + hēmér(a) day + -os adj. suffix) + -al1
Related forms
ephemerally, adverb
ephemeralness, noun
nonephemeral, adjective
nonephemerally, adverb
unephemeral, adjective
unephemerally, adverb
Synonyms
1. fleeting, evanescent, transient, momentary, brief.
Antonyms
1. permanent.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for ephemeral

ephemeral

/ɪˈfɛmərəl/
adjective
1.
lasting for only a short time; transitory; short-lived: ephemeral pleasure
noun
2.
a short-lived organism, such as the mayfly
3.
a plant that completes its life cycle in less than one year, usually less than six months
Derived Forms
ephemerally, adverb
ephemerality, ephemeralness, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Greek ephēmeros lasting only a day, from hēmera day
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for ephemeral
adj.

1560s; see ephemera + -al (1). Related: Ephemerality. Originally of diseases and lifespans; extended sense of "transitory" is from 1630s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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