au·​di·​to·​ry | \ ˈȯ-də-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce auditory (audio) \

Definition of auditory

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 archaic : audience
2 archaic : auditorium



Definition of auditory (Entry 2 of 2)

: of, relating to, or experienced through hearing auditory stimuli

Other Words from auditory


auditorily \ ˌȯ-​də-​ˈtȯr-​ə-​lē How to pronounce auditory (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for auditory

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Auditory is close in meaning to acoustic and acoustical, but auditory usually refers more to hearing than to sound. For instance, many dogs have great auditory (not acoustic) powers, and the auditory nerve lets us hear by connecting the inner ear to the brain. Acoustic and acoustical instead refer especially to instruments and the conditions under which sound can be heard; so architects concern themselves with the acoustic properties of an auditorium, and instrument makers with those of a clarinet or piano.

Examples of auditory in a Sentence

Adjective The patient has damage to the auditory nerve. I have a bad auditory memory—unless I see a word in writing, and not just hear it, I forget it easily.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun For example, people with a history of verbal abuse from their parents appear to have changes in the auditory cortex that correlate with verbal difficulties later in life. Diana Kwon, Scientific American, 1 Jan. 2022 His paper offered possible causal mechanisms based on zoology, including the role of pheromones and tactile, olfactory, and auditory cues. Madeleine Watts, Harper’s Magazine , 25 May 2022 All remarkable and famous sounds are usually the result of sound marketing strategies, which consist in creating unique audios for advertising campaigns or media programs to let people recognize a product or service just using the auditory system. Jacopo Paoletti, Forbes, 18 Mar. 2022 Portia Carr, assistant professor of UAMS speech-language pathology, said groups focus on verbal expression, auditory comprehension, reading and writing. Jeannie Roberts, Arkansas Online, 30 May 2022 The area includes a wheelchair-accessible labyrinth, a wooden marimba to stimulate auditory senses, and raised copper animals on the benches for kids to touch. Anthony Cammalleri,, 13 May 2022 Those with auditory challenges might take advantage of smartphone-compatible hearing devices, captioning for conference calls or translation into American Sign Language (ASL). Dean Hager, Forbes, 3 May 2022 Researchers use a similar approach to probe auditory perception in birds. Adam Fishbein, Scientific American, 1 May 2022 Dixon's attorneys argued that Dixon has suffered from schizophrenia from an early age, experienced auditory and visual hallucinations and displayed delusional thoughts, but Board of Clemency members found Dixon to be mentally competent. Perry Vandell, USA TODAY, 11 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective But the kineticism of Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s ‘Memoria’ is auditory. Mark Olsen, Los Angeles Times, 8 Apr. 2022 Arriola’s was diagnosed with schizophrenia, and had auditory hallucinations and delusions, the federal suit states. Teri Figueroa, San Diego Union-Tribune, 3 Mar. 2022 Utilizing a mnemonic learning device in her Earth Science course, Lusby-Brown incorporated visual, auditory and interactive components to teach her students about the different celestial bodies of the solar system. C.r. Walker,, 28 Feb. 2022 Familiarize yourself with the different learning types — visual, auditory, kinesthetic or linguistic — to get a sense of your team’s preferences. James Mayo, Rolling Stone, 2 Feb. 2022 Line-cross technology, slip-and-fall detection and the ability to identify visual or auditory distress are helping hospitals better care for their patients. Fredrik Nilsson, Forbes, 27 Jan. 2022 The Marfa Tapes — which is nominated for Best Country Album — was released on May 7 and allows fans to experience an auditory peek of the small Texas town for which it is named. Stephanie Wenger,, 6 Jan. 2022 Some might be auditory and better able to keep up with the conversation. Yec, Forbes, 29 Oct. 2021 White noise is the auditory equivalent of white light -- a combo of every frequency on the acoustic spectrum, which blend together to mask most small sounds regardless of their frequency. Sandee Lamotte, CNN, 3 May 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of auditory


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1578, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for auditory


Middle English auditorie, borrowed from Latin audītōrium "hall, body of listeners" — more at auditorium


borrowed from Late Latin audītōrius, from audīre "to hear" + -tōrius, deverbal adjective suffix originally forming derivatives from agent nouns ending in -tōr-, -tor — more at audible entry 1

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The first known use of auditory was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near auditory



auditory capsule

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Statistics for auditory

Last Updated

30 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Auditory.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for auditory


au·​di·​to·​ry | \ ˈȯ-də-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce auditory (audio) \

Kids Definition of auditory

: of or relating to hearing an auditory nerve


au·​di·​to·​ry | \ ˈȯd-ə-ˌtōr-ē, -ˌtȯr- How to pronounce auditory (audio) \

Medical Definition of auditory

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of or relating to hearing
2 : attained, experienced, or produced through or as if through hearing auditory images auditory hallucinations
3 : marked by great susceptibility to impressions and reactions produced by acoustic stimuli an auditory individual


plural auditories

Medical Definition of auditory (Entry 2 of 2)

More from Merriam-Webster on auditory

Nglish: Translation of auditory for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of auditory for Arabic Speakers


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