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Descend vs Dismount vs Alight

Descend, dismount, alight mean to get or come down from a height.

One descends when one climbs down a slope (as of a hill or mountain), a ladder, a step, a stair, a wall, or a tree.

  • The plane began to descend.
  • She descended the stairs slowly.
  • Things are cooler and more damp as we descend to the cellar.

One dismounts when one gets down from a horse or from a bicycle or motorcycle.

  • Emma dismounted and took her horse's bridle.
  • Cyclists please dismount at the gate.

One alights when one comes down from a perch or out of a vehicle (as a carriage, a car, or an airplane) with a spring or especially with lightness and grace.

  • A thrush alighted on a branch of the pine tree.
  • Two men alighted from the vehicle.
  • Passengers for Lanzhou alight at Nanjing.