• (Especially of fabric) Light, delicate, and translucent.

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Example Sentences

“She looked like a goddess on a cliff as the sunset shone through her diaphanous wedding gown.”

“The diaphanous threads of the delicate fabric seemed to be made of actual stardust.”

“I want to get rid of these light-blocking curtains and replace them with something more diaphanous and airy.”

Word Origin

Greek, early 17th century

Why this word?

“Diaphanous” comes from a Greek word that means “to show through.” The Greek root word “phainein” (meaning “to show”) is related to “phantazein” (meaning “make visible”), which is the root of the English word “fantasy.” The adjective “diaphanous” almost exclusively applies to light, gauzy, translucent fabric, which is often used to make fancy, fantastical gowns. Chiffons, silks, satins, and laces are all diaphanous fabrics.  

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