grad·u·al /ˈgræʤəwəl, ʤəl, ˈgræʤwəl/
Grad·u·al a. Proceeding by steps or degrees; advancing, step by step, as in ascent or descent or from one state to another; regularly progressive; slow; as, a gradual increase of knowledge; a gradual decline.
Creatures animate with gradual life
Of growth, sense, reason, all summed up in man. --Milton.
1. R. C. Ch. (a) An antiphon or responsory after the epistle, in the Mass, which was sung on the steps, or while the deacon ascended the steps. (b) A service book containing the musical portions of the Mass.
2. A series of steps. [Obs.]
adj 1: proceeding in small stages; "a gradual increase in prices"
2: of a topographical gradient; not steep or abrupt; "a gradual
slope" [ant: steep]
n : (Roman Catholic Church) an antiphon (usually from the Book
of Psalms) immediately after the epistle at Mass