Wednesday Wordage – Detumescence

The weekly word. The section of the blog where I choose a word, define it, and give examples.



Say: dee-too-mesuh ns

Definition: The process of subsiding from a state of tension, swelling, or (especially) sexual arousal.

First Known Use: 1678

Synonyms include: diminution, decline

Antonyms include: Tumescence, swelling, increase.

My usage:

I actually used this word in my poem yesterday, but here is a bonus haiku.

Wrens sing a chorus
At the detumescing moon
And the rising sun

Usage examples:

‘A darkskinned man, big and nude and detumescing, gripping a knife and fork, unnaturally still, sitting opposite a khepri, her slight woman’s body in shadow, her chitinous head in silhouette.’

– Perdido Street Station, China Mieville

‘In man the process of tumescence and detumescence is simple.’

– Studies in the Psychology of Sex, Volume 3 (of 6), Havelock Ellis

Are there any words that you love? They don’t have to be complicated, just drop me a comment and tell me what word and why. I love hearing from you all.

Thanks for reading!


7 thoughts on “Wednesday Wordage – Detumescence

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