Definition of extinction in English:

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Pronunciation: /ikˈstiNG(k)SH(ə)n/


1The state or process of a species, family, or larger group being or becoming extinct: the extinction of the great auk mass extinctions
More example sentences
  • Marine fossil evidence tells of numerous extinctions, global mass extinction, and geochemical events.
  • There have been five major mass extinctions and more than 20 minor mass extinctions.
  • We're facing critical mass extinctions across a whole variety of ecosystems once the two degree level has been crossed, from coral reefs to rainforests.
dying out, disappearance, vanishing;
1.1The wiping out of a debt.
Example sentences
  • The principle of automatic extinction of the claim/debt on confusion has adverse consequences in the capital markets.
  • The policy of Immediate debt extinction was initiated by Gallalin.
2 Physics Reduction in the intensity of light or other radiation as it passes through a medium or object, due to absorption, reflection, and scattering: ultraviolet extinction
More example sentences
  • The concentration was employed to transform the experimentally obtained absorption into extinction coefficient spectra.
  • The pattern of turnover within a stage is important for understanding the mechanisms of radiation and extinction.
  • Will improved classification schemes allow better understanding of extinction and radiation events?


Late Middle English: from Latin exstinctio(n-), from exstinguere 'quench' (see extinguish).

Words that rhyme with extinction

distinction, intinction

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: ex·tinc·tion

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