Abeyance vs Ephemeral - What's the difference?

abeyance | ephemeral |

As nouns the difference between abeyance and ephemeral

is that abeyance is (legal) expectancy; condition of ownership of real property being undetermined; lapse in succession of ownership of estate, or title while ephemeral is something which lasts for a short period of time.

As an adjective ephemeral is

lasting for a short period of time.




(en noun)
  • (legal) Expectancy; condition of ownership of real property being undetermined; lapse in succession of ownership of estate, or title.
  • The proceeds of the estate shall be held in abeyance in an escrow account until the minor reaches age twenty-one.
    When there is no person in existence in whom an inheritance (or a dignity) can vest, it is said to be in abeyance . -Blackstone
  • Suspension; temporary suppression; dormant condition.
  • * 2003 , (Bill Bryson), A Short History of Nearly Everything , BCA 2003, page 376:
  • Without a plausible explanation for what might have provoked an ice age, the whole theory fell into abeyance .
  • (heraldry) Expectancy of a title, its right in existence but its exercise suspended.
  • The broad pennant of a commodore first class has been in abeyance since 1958, together with the rank.




    (en noun)
  • Something which lasts for a short period of time.
  • Synonyms

    * (short-lived) ephemeron


    (en adjective)
  • Lasting for a short period of time.
  • * Vicesimus Knox
  • Esteem, lasting esteem, the esteem of good men, like himself, will be his reward, when the gale of ephemeral popularity shall have gradually subsided.
  • * Sir J. Stephen
  • sentences not of ephemeral , but of eternal, efficacy
  • * '>citation
  • It was during an access of this kind that I suddenly left my home, and bending my steps towards the near Alpine valleys, sought in the magnificence, the eternity of such scenes, to forget myself and my ephemeral , because human, sorrows.
  • (biology) Existing for only one day, as with some flowers, insects, and diseases.
  • (geology, of a body of water) Usually dry, but filling with water for brief periods during and after precipitation.
  • * 1986 , W.H. Raymond, "Clinoptilolite Deposit in the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, South Dakota, U.S.A.", in Y?ichi Murakami et al. (editors), New Developments in Zeolite Science and Technology (conference proceedings), Elsevier, ISBN 978-0-444-98981-9, page 80:
  • The graben constitutes a depositional basin and a topographic low, underlain by Cretaceous shales, in which volcanic debris accumulated in ephemeral lakes and streams in Oligocene and early Miocene time.


    * (lasting for a short period of time) temporary, transitory, fleeting, evanescent, momentary, short-lived, short, volatile * See also


    * (lasting for a long period of time) permanent, eternal, everlasting, timeless.

    Derived terms

    * ephemerally