to move, climb, or go upward; mount; rise:
The airplane ascended into the clouds.
to slant upward.
to rise to a higher point, rank, or degree; proceed from an inferior to a superior degree or level:
to ascend to the presidency.
to go toward the source or beginning; go back in time.
Music. to rise in pitch; pass from any tone to a higher one.
to go or move upward upon or along; climb; mount:
to ascend a lookout tower; to ascend stairs.
to gain or succeed to; acquire:
to ascend the throne.
Contemporary Examples

But as the Ugg ascended to mainstream popularity, they were simultaneously shunned by fashion types.
Have Ugg Boots Made a Tepid Return to Fashion? Misty White Sidell February 27, 2013

Prince Nayif ascended to become Crown Prince last October when his brother Prince Sultan passed away.
Meet Prince Salman, the Next Saudi King Bruce Riedel June 15, 2012

Had that advice been taken, he would have ascended to the presidency upon Nixon’s resignation.
Steele’s Senate Forefather John Avlon February 7, 2009

Weaving through glacial debris, he ascended a thousand feet into the snowline, followed by two Hunzas.
Death on Killer Mountain Amanda Padoan July 5, 2013

Historically, education was one way the middle and working classes, and even the poor, ascended the class ladder.
Trustafarians Want to Tell You How to Live Joel Kotkin October 30, 2014

Historical Examples

After a moment’s hesitation Mutimer ascended the stairs by threes.
Demos George Gissing

Fifty years before Queen Victoria had ascended the throne of England.
The Grand Old Man Richard B. Cook

The trail was stony, and many steep hills were ascended and descended.
The Awakening of the Desert Julius C. Birge

This was a sad mistake; and it cost him dear enough after he had ascended his father’s throne.
Biographical Stories Nathaniel Hawthorne

These I ascended, and eventually reached the room in question.
The Kidnapped President Guy Boothby

to go or move up (a ladder, hill, slope, etc); mount; climb
(intransitive) to slope or incline upwards
(intransitive) to rise to a higher point, level, degree, etc
to follow (a river) upstream towards its source
to trace (a genealogy, etc) back in time
to sing or play (a scale, arpeggio, etc) from the lower to higher notes
ascend the throne, to become king or queen

late 14c., from Latin ascendere “to climb up, mount, ascend,” figuratively “to rise, reach,” from ad- “to” (see ad-) + scandere “to climb” (see scan (v.)). Also in 15c. used with a sense “to mount (a female) for copulation.” Related: Ascended; ascending. An Old English word for it was stigan.

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  • Ascendent

    a position of dominance or controlling influence: possession of power, superiority, or preeminence: With his rivals in the ascendant, he soon lost his position. an ancestor; forebear. Astrology. the point of the ecliptic or the sign and degree of the zodiac rising above the eastern horizon at the time of a birth or event: the […]

  • Ascender

    a person or thing that ascends or causes ascension. Printing. the part of a lowercase letter, as b, d, f, h, that rises above x-height. a letter rising above x-height, as b, d, f, h, etc. Historical Examples The head of a stem (especially of an ascender) should be slightly wider than the foot (fig. […]

  • Ascendeur

    noun (mountaineering) a metal grip that is threaded on a rope and can be alternately tightened and slackened as an aid to climbing the rope: used attached to slings for the feet and waist Also called ascender

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