cor·​po·​re·​al | \ kȯr-ˈpȯr-ē-əl How to pronounce corporeal (audio) \

Definition of corporeal

1 : having, consisting of, or relating to a physical material body: such as
a : not spiritual … some few traces of a diviner nature which look out through his corporeal baseness …— Robert Browning
b : not immaterial or intangible : substantial corporeal property
2 archaic : corporal

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Other Words from corporeal

corporeally \ kȯr-​ˈpȯr-​ē-​ə-​lē How to pronounce corporeally (audio) \ adverb
corporealness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for corporeal


animal, bodily, carnal, corporal, fleshly, material, physical, somatic


nonmaterial, nonphysical

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Choose the Right Synonym for corporeal

material, physical, corporeal, phenomenal, sensible, objective mean of or belonging to actuality. material implies formation out of tangible matter; used in contrast with spiritual or ideal it may connote the mundane, crass, or grasping. material values physical applies to what is perceived directly by the senses and may contrast with mental, spiritual, or imaginary. the physical benefits of exercise corporeal implies having the tangible qualities of a body such as shape, size, or resistance to force. artists have portrayed angels as corporeal beings phenomenal applies to what is known or perceived through the senses rather than by intuition or rational deduction. scientists concerned with the phenomenal world sensible stresses the capability of readily or forcibly impressing the senses. the earth's rotation is not sensible to us objective may stress material or independent existence apart from a subject perceiving it. no objective evidence of damage

Did You Know?

In various religions, including Christianity, corporeal existence is often called the opposite of spiritual existence, and corporeal existence, unlike spiritual existence, is often said to be contaminated with evil. The word is also often used by philosophers, especially when considering the nature of reality. For lawyers, corporeal describes physical property such as houses or cars, as opposed to something valuable but nonphysical like a good reputation.

Examples of corporeal in a Sentence

the corporeal nature of matter corporeal cravings such as hunger and thirst

Recent Examples on the Web

The corporeal evidence of grief could melt away, even if its roots still clung tightly. Rachel Vorona Cote, SELF, "Why I Embraced Skin Care After My Mother's Death," 18 Apr. 2019 Cable subscribers who are used to conventional, corporeal sports. Eric Van Allen, WIRED, "Live on ESPN: Is Esports Finally Ready for Its Crossover Moment?," 11 July 2018 Spellbound’s artists will lead the audience through the corporeal journey. Kt Hawbaker,, "The Chicago Children's Theatre announces inclusive 2018-19 season," 9 May 2018 Now, after being given a corporeal form, all the little prince needs is a name. Kelly Conaboy, The Cut, "7 Unbiased Name Suggestions for Duchess Kate’s Third Child," 23 Apr. 2018 At age 93, iconic Sacramento priest Monsignor Edward Kavanagh had only one desire left: to leave the corporeal world on St. Patrick’s Day and spend it instead with his favorite saint above. Anita Chabria, sacbee, "‘He was not timid’: Longtime Sacramento priest loved his parishioners, native Ireland | The Sacramento Bee," 17 Mar. 2018 A few years before the story started, the god Eothas supposedly took on corporeal form as a farmer named Waidwen and started a holy war, and the opposing side blew him up with a bomb constructed with the help of the other gods. Thomas Wells, Ars Technica, "An appreciation of games that click back and change the gamers who love them," 16 Jan. 2018 In recent years, political geeks have eagerly cataloged and compared the corporeal quirks of presidential candidates in search of patterns that reveal what the American people are looking for in a leader. Newsweek, "Analysis," 14 Mar. 2018 And though her words may shock and at times nauseate, Han’s corporeal investigations appear in service of a less horrifying goal: stealing a glimpse at the gentler, sturdier stuff that has no form—the soul. The Editors, The Atlantic, "The Best Books We Read in 2017," 22 Dec. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'corporeal.' 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 corporeal

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for corporeal

Middle English corporealle, from Latin corporeus "having a body, physical" (from corpor-, corpus "body" + -eus -eous) + -alle -al entry 1

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Statistics for corporeal

Last Updated

29 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for corporeal

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

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More Definitions for corporeal



English Language Learners Definition of corporeal

formal : having or consisting of a physical body or form


cor·​po·​re·​al | \ kȯr-ˈpȯr-ē-əl How to pronounce corporeal (audio) \

Kids Definition of corporeal

: having, consisting of, or relating to a physical body Where was her body? … The corporeal Meg simply was not.— Madeleine L'Engle, A Wrinkle in Time


cor·​po·​re·​al | \ kȯr-ˈpōr-ē-əl, -ˈpȯr- How to pronounce corporeal (audio) \

Medical Definition of corporeal

: having, consisting of, or relating to a physical material body

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cor·​po·​re·​al | \ kȯr-ˈpōr-ē-əl How to pronounce corporeal (audio) \

Legal Definition of corporeal

: having, consisting of, or relating to a physical material body — compare incorporeal

Other Words from corporeal

corporeally adverb

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Comments on corporeal

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


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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