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Definition of "supervene" []

  • To come or occur as something extraneous, additional, or unexpected. See Synonyms at follow. (verb-intransitive)
  • To follow immediately after; ensue. (verb-intransitive)
  • Philosophy To be dependent on a set of facts or properties in such a way that change can occur only after change has occurred in those facts or properties. (verb-intransitive)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "supervene" in a sentence
  • "In view of the important changes in his own life which were about to supervene, that is to say, firstly, his departure for India, and secondly, his coming of age before he could hope to return from that land of promise, he had counted on a quiet evening with his mother."
  • "The system is said to "supervene" (I'm not making this up) on its components causing the whole to be greater than the sum of the parts."
  • "Blog posts may not be reducible to stuff, but they do supervene on stuff."