artificial

adjective
ar·​ti·​fi·​cial | \ ˌär-tə-ˈfi-shᵊl How to pronounce artificial (audio) \

Definition of artificial

1 : humanly contrived (see contrive sense 1b) often on a natural model : man-made an artificial limb artificial diamonds
2a : having existence in legal, economic, or political theory
b : caused or produced by a human and especially social or political agency an artificial price advantage Within these companies, qualified women run into artificial barriers that prevent them from advancing to top positions in management.— James J. Kilpatrick
3a : lacking in natural or spontaneous quality an artificial smile an artificial excitement
b : imitation, sham artificial flavor
4 : based on differential morphological characters not necessarily indicative of natural relationships an artificial key for plant identification
5 obsolete : artful, cunning

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Other Words from artificial

artificiality \ ˌär-​tə-​ˌfi-​shē-​ˈa-​lə-​tē How to pronounce artificiality (audio) \ noun
artificially \ -​ˈfi-​shᵊl-​ē How to pronounce artificially (audio) \ adverb
artificialness \ -​ˈfi-​shəl-​nəs How to pronounce artificialness (audio) \ noun

Examples of artificial in a Sentence

the world's first artificial heart This product contains no artificial colors natural substances are used. The country's borders are artificial, and were set with no consideration for the various ethnic groups in the region.
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Recent Examples on the Web

According to the press release, artificial light likely compromises clownfish’s natural spawning rhythms. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "Thanks to Light Pollution, We’re Losing Nemo," 11 July 2019 Without owls, Caliman says, plantation managers would need to buy rodenticides worth up to $4 per hectare annually; to lure the birds, Sinar Mas has installed 26,000 artificial nest boxes on Sumatra. Dyna Rochmyaningsih, Science | AAAS, "Courting controversy, scientists team with industry to tackle one of the world’s most destructive crops," 11 July 2019 Other oddities found: a hallway covered with artificial eyeballs and a life-size female doll hanging from a chandelier, The New York Times reported. Ashley Shaffer, USA TODAY, "Artificial eyeballs and a life-size doll," 10 July 2019 Despite their names, artificial intelligence technologies and their component systems, such as artificial neural networks, don’t have much to do with real brain science. Gabriel A. Silva, The Conversation, "Neuroscience and artificial intelligence can help improve each other," 9 July 2019 Formulas are free of parabens, synthetic colors, artificial fragrances, phthalates and other chemicals. Kevin Smothers, latimes.com, "Designer Norma Kamali unveils her new, inclusive skin-care line," 8 July 2019 But one of the biggest changes is the new artificial grass, said Lauren Frederick, director of sales and marketing at Metazoa Brewing. Emily Sabens, Indianapolis Star, "Sip a beer and play with your pup at Metazoa Brewing's renovated dog park," 8 July 2019 Many people in the US viewed K-Pop at the time as an artificial product and looked down on it. August Brown, Detroit Free Press, "K-Pop is storming U.S. record biz, but can it fully cross over?," 5 July 2019 Another plan that was ultimately dismissed as being too impractical was using decommissioned military bunkers as artificial hibernation chambers for wintering bat populations. Louis Sahagun, SFChronicle.com, "A deadly fungus is killing millions of bats in the US. Now it’s in California," 5 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'artificial.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of artificial

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for artificial

see artifice

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Statistics for artificial

Last Updated

14 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for artificial

The first known use of artificial was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for artificial

artificial

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of artificial

: not natural or real : made, produced, or done to seem like something natural
: not happening or existing naturally : created or caused by people
: not sincere

artificial

adjective
ar·​ti·​fi·​cial | \ ˌär-tə-ˈfi-shəl How to pronounce artificial (audio) \

Kids Definition of artificial

1 : made by humans an artificial lake
2 : not natural in quality an artificial smile
3 : made to seem like something natural artificial flowers artificial flavoring

Other Words from artificial

artificially adverb

artificial

adjective
ar·​ti·​fi·​cial | \ ˌärt-ə-ˈfish-əl How to pronounce artificial (audio) \

Medical Definition of artificial

1 : humanly contrived often on a natural model an artificial limb
2 : based on differential morphological characters not necessarily indicative of natural relationships an artificial key for identification of a group of organisms

Other Words from artificial

artificially \ -​ˈfish-​(ə-​)lē How to pronounce artificially (audio) \ adverb

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artificial

adjective
ar·​ti·​fi·​cial

Legal Definition of artificial

1a : made by humans artificial accessions — compare natural
b : caused or produced by a human and especially social or political agency an artificial price advantage
2 : arising through operation of law

Other Words from artificial

artificially adverb

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Comments on artificial

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