Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Floating or swimming in water.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. floating or swimming (in water)

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Floating in water, as the leaves of water lilies, or submersed, as those of many aquatic plants.
  • adj. Placed horizontally across the field, as if swimming toward the dexter side; said of all sorts of fishes except the flying fish.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Swimming; floating.

Etymologies

Latin natāns, natant-, present participle of natāre, frequentative of nāre, to swim; see snā- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • Anguillos &c. &c. et qualescunque in amne natant salu = Eels &c. &c., and every sort whatever that in water swimmeth [wicker/sallow] basket!

    Notes and Queries, Number 16, February 16, 1850

  • There is a point after _natant_, and then follows the word _Saliu_ (not _salu_) with a capital _S_.

    Notes and Queries, Number 16, February 16, 1850

  • Cedet et ipse mari vector, nec nautica pinus mutabit merces_ -- the feeling here is the same as in his mere descriptions of daily weather, like the _Omnia plenis rura natant fossis atque omnis navita ponto umida vela legit; _ not so much a vision of a golden age as Nature herself seen through a medium of strange gold.

    Latin Literature

  • And upon the top of that one of the stone pillars supporting the gate which I could see, stood a creature of stone, whether natant, volant, passant, couchant, or rampant, I could not tell, only it looked like something terrible enough for a quite antediluvian heraldry.

    Annals of a Quiet Neighbourhood

  • After islands or continents were raised above the primeval ocean, great numbers of the most simple animals would attempt to seek food at the edges or shores of the new land, and might thence gradually become amphibious; as is now seen in the frog, who changes from an aquatic animal to an amphibious one; and in the gnat, which changes from a natant to a volant state.

    Canto I

  • The gnat and the tadpole resemble each other in their change from natant animals with gills into aerial animals with lungs; and in their change of the element in which they live; and probably of the food, with which they are supported; and lastly, with their acquiring in their new state the difference of sex, and the organs of seminal or amatorial reproduction.

    Zoonomia, Vol. I Or, the Laws of Organic Life

  • After these an apparatus of limbs for future uses, or for the purpose of moving the body in its present natant state, and of lungs for future respiration, and of testes for future reproduction, are formed by the irritations and sensations, and consequent exertions of the parts previously existing, and to which the new parts are to be attached.

    Zoonomia, Vol. I Or, the Laws of Organic Life

  • "Before me natant birds hunker against the teeth of a northerly breeze."

    Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day

  • Eurique Zephyrique tonat domus, omnia plenis Rura natant foflis, atque omnis navita ponto Humida vela legit.

    P. Virgilii Maronis Opera

  • Gemmas terminales tantuiji ramoj exferunt, adeoque minime omnium topiaria efti RadiceSy velut in ipfa fuperficie terra? natant, pri maria tantum radice excepta, quaD. perpendicuIari ter alte fefe in terram demergit, quare etiam btt arbor vix transplantatur.

    Caroli a Linné equit. aur. de stella polari archiatri regii med. et botan. profess. Upsal. Acad ...

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Comments

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  • (adj) something that is either swimming or floating in water.

    August 26, 2008