Absences



state of being away or not being present:
I acted as supervisor in his absence. Your absence was noted on the records.
period of being away:
an absence of several weeks.
failure to attend or appear when expected.
lack; deficiency:
the absence of proof.
inattentiveness; preoccupation; absent-mindedness:
absence of mind.
Contemporary Examples

He avoids confrontation and the limelight, but he could not suppress his dismay about the absences that inaugural day.
Vet Snub Shocks Families Leslie H. Gelb July 17, 2010

His absences accumulated, and soon we more often found Daquan leaning against the wall of the corner bodega than in a desk.
He Was My Favorite Student, and They Say He Killed a Baby Brandy Zadrozny September 12, 2013

They confronted the entertainer about his inattentiveness and absences.
Murray’s Sloppy Paper Trail Diane Dimond November 6, 2011

But as Caine tells it in the book, “We were at school and there was no reason to question [her absences] at all.”
Michael Caine Tells His Life Straight Jacob Bernstein October 24, 2010

The absences certainly stunned members of the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, the group that raised the $65 million for the facility.
Vet Snub Shocks Families Leslie H. Gelb July 17, 2010

Historical Examples

Mrs. Biggers carried on the work during Mrs. Boyer’s absences.
The History of Woman Suffrage, Volume VI Various

Mrs. Jupe’s absences from home were now more frequent than ever.
The Christian Hall Caine

He got in with a gay set at Barnum’s Hotel, his hours grew irregular, his absences from home more numerous and more prolonged.
The Mermaid of Druid Lake and Other Stories Charles Weathers Bump

Had these daily absences any connection with the great mystery?
The Woman-Haters Joseph C. Lincoln

The British officer next in seniority to you will command the detachment in your absences.
The Elephant God Gordon Casserly

noun
the state of being away
the time during which a person or thing is away
the fact of being without something; lack
n.

late 14c., from Old French absence (14c.), from Latin absentia, noun of state from absentem (nominative absens), present participle of abesse “be away from, be absent,” from ab- “away” (see ab-) + esse “to be” (see essence).

Absence makes the heart grow fonder
[Thomas Haynes Bayly (1797-1839) “Isle of Beauty”]

absence ab·sence (āb’səns)
n.
See petit mal.
In addition to the idiom beginning with absence also see: conspicuous by its absence

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  • Absent

    not in a certain place at a given time; away, missing (opposed to ): absent from class. lacking; nonexistent: Revenge is absent from his mind. not attentive; preoccupied; absent-minded: an absent look on his face. to take or keep (oneself) away: to absent oneself from a meeting. in the of; without: Absent some catastrophe, stock-market […]

  • Absent-minded

    so lost in thought that one does not realize what one is doing, what is happening, etc.; preoccupied to the extent of being unaware of one’s immediate surroundings. Contemporary Examples The boy genius Geithner turned into an absent-minded professor when he filled in his tax returns. Obama’s Strange Obsession Tina Brown February 8, 2009 A […]



  • Absent without leave

    . Historical Examples The one is under arrest for drunkenness, and the other has been “absent without leave.” Diary of an Enlisted Man Lawrence Van Alstyne “She has no business to be absent without leave,” said Sabina. A Rock in the Baltic Robert Barr The Sergeant came back, looking woe-begone, and Lawrence was published on […]

  • Absent-mindedly

    so lost in thought that one does not realize what one is doing, what is happening, etc.; preoccupied to the extent of being unaware of one’s immediate surroundings. Contemporary Examples He had his right hand to his face and was absent-mindedly rubbing the scar on his left cheekbone. Gordie Howe Hockey’s Greatest War Horse W.C. […]



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