“Descent, n. Going lower. Popularly used to indicated the existing generation is a peg worse that than which fathered it. Thus one Darwin justly discourses upon the superiority of the ancestral baboon in a melancholy essay, called ‘The Descent of Man.’”
Excerpted from: Bierce, Ambrose. David E. Schultz and S.J. Joshi, eds. The Unabridged Devil’s Dictionary. Athens: The University of Georgia Press, 2000.