extraterrestrial

adjective
ex·​tra·​ter·​res·​tri·​al | \ ˌek-strə-tə-ˈre-strē-əl How to pronounce extraterrestrial (audio) , -ˈres-chəl, -ˈresh-chəl\

Definition of extraterrestrial

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: originating, existing, or occurring outside the earth or its atmosphere extraterrestrial life

extraterrestrial

noun

Definition of extraterrestrial (Entry 2 of 2)

: a being from another world : an extraterrestrial being

Examples of extraterrestrial in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The world grapples with new knowledge of an intelligent extraterrestrial civilization, and all the promise and terror that comes with that discovery. Vox Staff, Vox, "The most thought-provoking books the Vox staff read in 2018," 21 Dec. 2018 Shortly before Halloween, the chairman of Harvard's astronomy department openly declared that an interstellar object hurtling through our Solar System might just be part of an extraterrestrial craft. Rob Reid, Ars Technica, "Nailing down the nature of ‘Oumuamua—it’s probably a comet, but…," 29 Nov. 2018 Last April, a SpaceX rocket launched that mission to map 85 percent of the sky in the coming years and look for planets similar to ours, ones that could be prime candidates to hunt for extraterrestrial life. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "Kepler's Last Light, and Its Towering Legacy," 8 Feb. 2019 Denying the existence of extraterrestrial life, or fairies, or Santa Claus, does not constitute a worldview. Tim Crane, WSJ, "‘Seven Types of Atheism’ Review: Better Off Without Him?," 17 Dec. 2018 For most of the 60-year history of the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI), researchers have hunted for radio signals. Mike Wall, Space.com, "Student Project Scans Sky for Alien Laser Beams," 29 Sep. 2018 Data compiled during those hours will later be archived and analyzed for signals stemming from extraterrestrial technology. Josh Hafner, USA TODAY, "Stephen Hawking was looking for alien life when he died. That search just got a big boost," 8 May 2018 For decades, a group of researchers on a quest to find extraterrestrial life have been listening patiently to the cosmos. Brian Resnick, Vox, "What humpback whales can teach us about alien languages," 6 Dec. 2018 And while the debate over whether extraterrestrials exist IRL is still up for debate, hearing your fave celebs recount their alien adventures and extraterrestrial encounters is probably the greatest thing EVER. Seventeen.com Editors, Seventeen, "10 Celebs Who Totally Believe in Aliens," 20 Oct. 2015

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Here are oceans of contingencies navigable only by an alternative race of extraterrestrials: the angels of heaven. Brad Leithauser, WSJ, "‘The Grandmaster’ Review: The 64-Square Universe," 8 Nov. 2018 Maybe extraterrestrials will be able to figure this out after all. Cory Zapatka, The Verge, "Decoding images from the Golden Record," 30 Oct. 2018 Elle Fanning plays one of the extraterrestrials, who find themselves in the suburbs of London in 1977. Gabe Cohn, New York Times, "What’s on TV Saturday: ‘American Made’ and ‘I Want That Wedding’," 9 June 2018 Bettina Rodriguez Aguilera, a former city councilwoman from the west Dade suburb of Doral, has publicly discussed meeting extraterrestrials as a child. David Smiley And Alex Daugherty, miamiherald, "They've met aliens and dictators and slimed Al Gore: Meet Ros-Lehtinen's would-be heirs | Miami Herald," 23 May 2018 Alex Sharp leads the cast, which includes Nicole Kidman (as a human) and Elle Fanning and Ruth Wilson (as extraterrestrials). Ben Kenigsberg, New York Times, "Summer 2018 Movie Release Schedule," 4 May 2018 So how close are the nearest signaling extraterrestrials? NBC News, "Simple math shows how many space aliens may be out there," 26 Jan. 2018 In Space Opera, humanity is living blissfully unaware of alien life, until extraterrestrials appear and invite them into an advanced intergalactic civilization. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "Space Opera is the funniest science fiction novel I’ve read since Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy," 14 Apr. 2018 Would Boyajian have really raised so much money if KIC 8462852 hadn’t generated so much hype about intelligent extraterrestrials? Neel V. Patel, Slate Magazine, "How Interesting Does Science Have to Be for the Public to Fund It?," 4 Jan. 2018

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

Adjective

1848, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1950, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

2 Mar 2019

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The first known use of extraterrestrial was in 1848

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More Definitions for extraterrestrial

extraterrestrial

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of extraterrestrial

: coming from or existing outside the planet Earth

More from Merriam-Webster on extraterrestrial

Spanish Central: Translation of extraterrestrial

Nglish: Translation of extraterrestrial for Spanish Speakers

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