ap·​pulse | \ əˈpəls, aˈp-, ˈaˌp- also -lts \
plural -s

Definition of appulse

1 : a driving or running toward something (such as a place) : act of striking against something (such as a point) the days have passed when national differences could be settled by the appulse of small professional armies— R. S. Ellery
2 : the apparent very near approach of one celestial body to another : a coming into conjunction — see lunar appulse

Love words?

You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:

  • More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

History and Etymology for appulse

Latin appulsus driving forward, approach, from appulsus, past participle of appellere to drive toward, strike against, from ad- + pellere to drive, beat, push

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about appulse

Statistics for appulse

Cite this Entry

“Appulse.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Feb. 2020.

Comments on appulse

What made you want to look up appulse? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

More Confusing Words—Quiz

  • cats on impossible timber
  • The magician ______ moved the selected card to the top of the deck.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!