Words related to -ance

abidance (n.)

"act of continuing or abiding," 1640s, from abide + -ance.

acquittance (n.)

"legal settlement" of a debt, obligation, etc., early 14c., aquitaunce, from Old French aquitance and Medieval Latin acquietantia; see acquit + -ance.

admittance (n.)

1580s, "the action of admitting," formed in English from admit + -ance (if from Latin, it would have been *admittence; French uses accès in this sense). Used formerly in figurative senses where admission now prevails. Admissure was used in this sense from mid-15c.


word-forming element denoting quality or state, from Latin -antia, forming abstract nouns on past-participle adjectives in -antem, appearing in English mostly in words borrowed directly from Latin (those passing through French usually have -ance or -ence; see -ance). But English also has kept many pairs of words in -ance and -ancy (radiance/radiancy, etc.). Though typically one of the two forms has been more common, both were kept "as metrically useful or rhetorically effective" [Fowler, 1926].


agent or instrumental suffix, from Old French and French -ant, from Latin -antem, accusative of -ans, present-participle suffix of many Latin verbs. Compare -ance.

appliance (n.)

1560s, "action of putting into use," from apply + -ance. The meaning "instrument, thing applied for a purpose" is from 1590s.

ascendance (n.)

1742, from ascend + -ance. According to OED, properly "the act of ascending," but used from the start in English as a synonym of ascendancy "state of being in the ascendant, governing or controlling influence."

ascendence (n.)

alternative spelling of ascendance (see -ance). Related: Ascendent; ascendency.

avoidance (n.)

late 14c., "action of emptying," from avoid + -ance. The sense of "action of dodging or shunning" is recorded from early 15c.; it also meant "action of making legally invalid" (1620s), and, of an office, etc., "becoming vacant" (mid-15c.).

brilliance (n.)

"quality of being brilliant," 1755, from brilliant + -ance. The figurative sense (of wit, intelligence, etc.) is from 1779. Distinguished from brilliancy in that the latter usually is applied to things measurable in degrees.