AskDefine | Define salient

Dictionary Definition

salient adj
1 having a quality that thrusts itself into attention; "an outstanding fact of our time is that nations poisoned by anti semitism proved less fortunate in regard to their own freedom"; "a new theory is the most prominent feature of the book"; "salient traits"; "a spectacular rise in prices"; "a striking thing about Picadilly Circus is the statue of Eros in the center"; "a striking resemblance between parent and child" [syn: outstanding, prominent, spectacular, striking]
2 (of angles) pointing outward at an angle of less than 180 degrees [ant: re-entrant]
3 represented as leaping (rampant but leaning forward) [syn: salient(ip)] n : (military) the part of the line of battle that projects closest to the enemy

User Contributed Dictionary



Latin salire (to leap)


  • /ˈseɪljənt/, /"seIlj@nt/
  • Hyphenation: sa·lient


  1. prominent, worthy of note; pertinent or relevant
    The article is not exhaustive, but it covers the salient points pretty well.
  2. : Of an animal, usually a quadruped, depicted in a leaping posture.


  • 1878 — Thomas Hardy, The Return of the Native Book 2, ch. 5
    With nearer approach these fragmentary sounds became pieced together, and were found to be the salient points of the tune called "Nancy's Fancy."
  • 1898 — H. G. Wells, The War of the Worlds Book2, ch.2
    The last salient point in which the systems of these creatures differed from ours was in what one might have thought a very trivial particular.
  • 1936 — H.P. Lovecraft, The Shadow Over Innsmouth
    Warning me that many of the street signs were down, the youth drew for my benefit a rough but ample and painstaking sketch map of the town's salient features.


Derived terms

Related terms


in an heraldic posture


  1. an outwardly projecting part of a fortification, trench system, or line of defense


part of a fortification

Extensive Definition

Salient may refer to:

See also

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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