Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Sufficiently thin or airy as to be translucent.
  • adjective Of such fine composition as to be easily damaged or broken; delicate.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Transmitting light; permitting the passage of light; transparent; clear; translucent.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Allowing light to pass through, as porcelain; translucent or transparent; pellucid; clear.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective Transparent; allowing light to pass through; capable of being seen through.
  • adjective Of a fine, almost transparent texture, e.g. gossamer.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective so thin as to transmit light

Etymologies

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

[From Medieval Latin diaphanus, transparent, from Greek diaphanēs, from diaphainein, to be transparent : dia-, dia- + phainein, phan-, to show; see bhā- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Medieval Latin diaphanus (from Ancient Greek διαφανής) +‎ -ous.

Examples

  • He introduces two female dancers, Silvina Cortés and Olga Cobos, who dip and skim in diaphanous shifts, and although crafted with typical Maliphant precision, this new material is inconsequential and ultimately soporific.

    Russell Maliphant company

  • I think she deserves credit for using the word diaphanous & spelling it correctly.

    Regretsy – Blue Cheese

  • I have no clue how many people are here, but it is a picture-perfect summer evening, breezy and bathed in diaphanous (I've always loved that word) light.

    Swampland Commenter Pool - Swampland - TIME.com

  • A Pierrette -- in short, diaphanous muslin, her face whitened to match it; a Pierrette who stood slowly spinning on her toes, with arms raised and hands joined in an arch above her glistening hair.

    Beyond

  • A Pierrette -- in short, diaphanous muslin, her face whitened to match it; a Pierrette who stood slowly spinning on her toes, with arms raised and hands joined in an arch above her glistening hair.

    Complete Project Gutenberg John Galsworthy Works

  • Designer Ashleigh Verrier said her favorite fashion word was "diaphanous" -- an adjective characterizing fineness of texture.

    Breaking News - The Post Chronicle

  • "I never picked up on them until I started to see sheer versions," she said, referring to diaphanous varieties that appeared on spring runways at Jil Sander, Chloe, Marc Jacobs and Lanvin, among others.

    The Seattle Times

  • The researchers identified a mutation in the DIAPH3 gene that causes over-production of a compound known as a diaphanous protein.

    Newswise: Latest News

  • The researchers identified a mutation in the DIAPH3 gene that causes over-production of a compound known as a diaphanous protein.

    Daily News & Analysis

  • The researchers identified a mutation in the DIAPH3 gene that causes over-production of a compound known as a diaphanous protein.

    Spero News

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