focal

adjective
fo·​cal | \ ˈfō-kəl How to pronounce focal (audio) \

Definition of focal

: of, relating to, being, or having a focus

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Other Words from focal

focally \ ˈfō-​kə-​lē How to pronounce focal (audio) \ adverb

Examples of focal in a Sentence

a focal figure in the movement
Recent Examples on the Web Since nationwide protests over racial injustice and police brutality have coursed through the country this year, BLM signs have regularly been focal points for acts of vandalism. Washington Post, "A Black family put up a BLM sign. Then they found their cars on fire and Trump graffiti painted on their garage, they say.," 23 Nov. 2020 Arrange accents in groupings of twos and threes to create focal points. oregonlive, "Zooming with the family over the holidays? Style your room with impressive books, plants, collectibles on sale," 12 Dec. 2020 The Maasai ethnic group in Kenya provided one of the project’s first focal points. Rachel Feltman, Popular Science, "Sharing doesn’t make you a sucker. This scientist has the numbers to prove it.," 7 Dec. 2020 Their shop offers a colorful experience of wares, including focal pieces for the home, artwork and gifts. Shelby Simon | Contributing Writer, NOLA.com, "Shop profile: 'Making magic' at Uptown's Hazelnut," 4 Dec. 2020 For this DIY Christmas wreath, design the layout around the main focal element, the orange slices. Sarah Martens, Better Homes & Gardens, "How to Make a Farmhouse Dried Orange Wreath," 18 Nov. 2020 This focal vision activates the sympathetic nervous system. Jessica Wapner, Scientific American, "Vision and Breathing May Be the Secrets to Surviving 2020," 16 Nov. 2020 Riflescopes in this field are by definition versatile, configured to match a variety of rifle actions, and with simple, second-focal-plane reticles and capped turrets. John B. Snow, Outdoor Life, "We Tested the Best-Selling Affordable Deer Rifles, Scopes, and Ammo. Here Are Our Top Picks," 6 Nov. 2020 Igor Siwanowicz, a research scientist at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Janelia Research Campus, magnified the snail tongue 40 times and photographed the layers with a laser at different focal lengths. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, "From a Zebrafish to Nylon Stockings, See This Year’s Small World Photography Winners," 15 Oct. 2020

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

1676, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for focal

Time Traveler

The first known use of focal was in 1676

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Statistics for focal

Last Updated

10 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Focal.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/focal. Accessed 23 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for focal

focal

adjective
How to pronounce focal (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of focal

: having central or great importance

focal

adjective
fo·​cal | \ ˈfō-kəl How to pronounce focal (audio) \

Kids Definition of focal

1 : of, relating to, or having a focus
2 : having central or great importance She is a focal character in the story.

focal

adjective
fo·​cal | \ ˈfō-kəl How to pronounce focal (audio) \

Medical Definition of focal

: of, relating to, being, or having a focus

Other Words from focal

focally \ -​kə-​lē How to pronounce focal (audio) \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on focal

Nglish: Translation of focal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of focal for Arabic Speakers

Comments on focal

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