Definition of appearance in English:

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Pronunciation: /əˈpirəns/


1The way that someone or something looks: I like the appearance of stripped antique pine they are similar in appearance
More example sentences
  • One claimed residents, some of the most desperate of the homeless on the city streets, have already noticeably improved in appearance and health.
  • Over the last fifteen years the quality of stock cabinets has vastly improved in appearance, detailing and durability.
  • However, up to one in 20 women are left with red, thick or painful scars that can takes years to improve in appearance.
look(s), air, aspect, mien
1.1An impression given by someone or something, although this may be misleading: she read it with every appearance of interest
More example sentences
  • It is often said that one should not judge by appearances and I whole-heartedly agree.
  • Don't judge by appearances, these can be deceiving, follow your heart and you cannot go far wrong!
  • The other is that, when it comes to assessing the behaviour of princes, even the shrewdest observers are largely condemned to judge by appearances.
impression, air, image, show, outward show;
semblance, facade, veneer, front, pretense
2An act of performing or participating in a public event: he is well-known for his television appearances
More example sentences
  • The pair are rarely pictured together and avoid joint appearances at public events.
  • Like it or not, his role requires some public appearances at important events.
  • Television appearances, charity events and photo-shoots have often crowded her schedule.
3 [usually in singular] An act of becoming visible or noticeable; an arrival: the sudden appearance of her daughter startled her
More example sentences
  • The lack of, and in certain cases, the complete absence of gender equality in our own homes makes its visible appearance in our daily routine.
  • Kat hadn't realized that she had arrived home, and was shocked at her sudden appearance.
  • After the deed is done, the time has arrived for the appearance of the detective.
arrival, advent, coming, emergence, materialization
3.1A process of coming into existence or use: the appearance of the railroad
More example sentences
  • The first stage of the healing process is the appearance of the sickness.
  • As we age, we most often gauge this process by the appearance of fine and deep wrinkles.
  • Such a system appears to have come into existence only after the Mississippian emergence and the appearance of chiefs.
occurrence, manifestation, development



keep up appearances

Maintain an impression of wealth or well-being, typically to hide the true situation.
Example sentences
  • It is crumbling, but the screen keeps up appearances.
  • It's the diplomatic version of distressed gentlefolk keeping up appearances, making ourselves ridiculous and obnoxious to our real equals, the other Europeans.
  • With an overriding mood of boredom, the boys and girls are almost totally incapable of talking to one another, and all their parents worry about is keeping up appearances.

make (or put in) an appearance

Attend an event briefly, typically out of courtesy.
Example sentences
  • It also involves casual activities such as going on a sight-seeing trip or making an appearance at an event - all of which take place in public view and therefore can be easily remembered.
  • The tame bald eagle, brought in for truly patriotic events, made an appearance.
  • It's only for the children who attend the playschool and Santa is to put in an appearance there also.

to (or by) all appearances

As far as can be seen: to all appearances, it had been a normal day
More example sentences
  • Now such statements are apparently unconfirmable - to all appearances there is no possible evidence of observation which would count for or against them.
  • That must be the thinking at another bar I was in - suddenly they're everywhere - that has an enclosed but, to all appearances, unventilated ‘smoking lounge.’
  • So the moral dilemma: do I pay money to find out for myself, thus lining the pockets of someone who has, to all appearances, committed massive scholarly fraud, or do I paddle along in ignorance?


Late Middle English: from Old French aparance, aparence, from late Latin apparentia, from Latin apparere (see appear).

Words that rhyme with appearance

adherence, clearance, coherence, interference, perseverance

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: ap·pear·ance

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