American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- adj. Becoming gradually less; waning.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Decreasing; becoming gradually less; waning, as the moon.
- Specifically— In heraldry, decreasing or waning: said of the moon when represented with the points toward the sinister side. Also decours.
- In botany, diminishing gradually from below upward.
- n. In heraldry, the moon in her decrement: used as a bearing. See decrement, 3.
- adj. Becoming gradually less; diminishing.
- adj. Waning.
- n. heraldry A crescent oriented with horns turned to sinister (pointing right).
GNU Webster's 1913
- adj. Becoming less by gradual diminution; decreasing.
- n. (Her.) A crescent with the horns directed towards the sinister.
- From decressant, from Anglo-Norman, present participle of decrestre ("to decrease") (Wiktionary)
- Latin dēcrēscēns, dēcrēscent-, present participle of dēcrēscere, to decrease; see decrease. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“Thin scuds flew swiftly over the moon's decrescent form.”
“We were quite out of earshot from the road, and it would be hard to imagine a more desolate place than it appeared, between two and three o'clock on that March night, the bare twigs of the birch-trees wriggling in the bleak wind, the faint light of the decrescent moon, that seemed to be upside down in the sky, falling on the white rocks, and on the whitened branches torn down by the winter's storms, lying like bleached bones upon the ground before us.”
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