late 14c., ascendent, astrological use is earliest, from Middle French ascendant (noun and adjective) and directly from Latin ascendentem (nominative ascendans), present participle of ascendere "to mount, ascend, go up" (see ascend). Sense "moving upward, rising" is recorded from 1590s. In the ascendant "ruling, dominant" (not, as is often thought, "rising") is from 1670s.
1. Why are Geography, Drama, Art and English in the ascendant?
2. Radical reformers are once more in the ascendant.
3. Her star seems very much in the ascendant.
4. His star was in the ascendant.
5. At first Athens was in the ascendant, then Sparta.