When someone is deceased, they are dead — not dying or even just about to die. They are dead.

The word deceased has been around since the 15th century, however, when people talk of someone's having died, they rarely use deceased in conversation. For example, if you ask someone how their dog is and their dog is recently deceased, they'll most likely use a less technical phrase such as "no longer with us," or "passed away." The word deceased is more formal, and most often used in the documentation of death or in legal situations, as in "we are here to read the will of the deceased."

Definitions of deceased

n someone who is no longer alive

dead person, dead soul, deceased person, decedent, departed
the person who Jesus raised from the dead after four days in the tomb; this miracle caused the enemies of Jesus to begin the plan to put him to death
an inhabitant of Hell
living dead, zombi, zombie
a dead body that has been brought back to life by a supernatural force
Type of:
individual, mortal, person, somebody, someone, soul
a human being

adj dead

“he is deceased
asleep, at peace, at rest, departed, gone
no longer having or seeming to have or expecting to have life

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.