in·​sen·​si·​ble | \ (ˌ)in-ˈsen(t)-sə-bəl How to pronounce insensible (audio) \

Definition of insensible

1 : incapable or bereft of feeling or sensation: such as
a : lacking sensory perception or ability to react insensible to pain
b : unconscious knocked insensible by a sudden blow
c : not endowed with life or spirit : insentient insensible earth
2a : unaware insensible of their danger
b : lacking emotional response : apathetic, indifferent insensible to fear
3 : not intelligible : meaningless
4 : imperceptible dampened by an insensible dew broadly : slight, gradual insensible motion
5 : lacking delicacy or refinement
6 archaic : stupid, senseless

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Other Words from insensible

insensibility \ (ˌ)in-​ˌsen(t)-​sə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce insensible (audio) \ noun
insensibleness \ (ˌ)in-​ˈsen(t)-​sə-​bəl-​nəs How to pronounce insensible (audio) \ noun
insensibly \ (ˌ)in-​ˈsen(t)-​sə-​blē How to pronounce insensible (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for insensible



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Examples of insensible in a Sentence

She was knocked insensible by the collision. if a choking person is insensible, you should lay them down on their back before performing the Heimlich maneuver
Recent Examples on the Web The spat with Ferguson points to a potentially uncomfortable fact for Mishra, who styles himself as an outsider speaking truth to an insensible and irredeemable establishment. Kanishk Tharoor, The New Republic, "Pankaj Mishra’s Reckoning With Liberalism’s Bloody Past," 22 Feb. 2021 The sentimental, emotional bits have happened hours before, and people have just been getting sloshed, insensible and furiously frolicsome. Christopher Arnott,, "Review: ’Mamma Mia’ a crowded, loud party at CT Rep," 10 June 2019 But there was one class of people who were apparently insensible to the Canyon: copper miners. Amanda Foreman, WSJ, "In Awe of the Grand Canyon," 25 July 2018 Beauty companies are not insensible to this predicament. Cristina Mueller, Town & Country, "Beauty and the Bees," 6 Dec. 2012 Often animals from these woods were imagined as insensible beasts. Ankita Chakraborty, Longreads, "A Crocodile In Paris: The Queer Classics of Qiu Miaojin," 8 June 2018 Although the bulb of the follicle is alive, the hair shaft is dead and insensible. Katy Waldman, Slate Magazine, "Siri Hustvedt’s preening essays take their author’s own brilliance as their main subject.," 13 Jan. 2017 Eclipses happen because every now and then, in predictable but still primally unsettling cycles, a warm, bright, life-giving object is obscured by a dark, dead, insensible rock. Jeffrey Kluger, Time, "Trump's Anti-Obama Eclipse Meme Doesn't Make Scientific Sense," 24 Aug. 2017 The process exposes birds to a gas mixture that renders them insensible to pain or distress before slaughter. The Washington Post,, "Perdue Farms unveiling more humane chicken slaughtering methods," 17 July 2017

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4

History and Etymology for insensible

Middle English, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French, from Latin insensibilis, from in- + sensibilis sensible

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Time Traveler for insensible

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

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Cite this Entry

“Insensible.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for insensible



English Language Learners Definition of insensible

: not able to feel pain, emotions, etc.
: not aware of something
: not conscious


in·​sen·​si·​ble | \ in-ˈsen-sə-bəl How to pronounce insensible (audio) \

Kids Definition of insensible

1 : not able to feel The animal is insensible to pain.
2 : not aware of or caring about something They seemed insensible to the danger.


in·​sen·​si·​ble | \ -ˈsen(t)-sə-bəl How to pronounce insensible (audio) \

Medical Definition of insensible

1 : incapable or bereft of feeling or sensation: as
a : unconscious knocked insensible by a sudden blow
b : lacking sensory perception or ability to react insensible to pain
c : lacking emotional response : apathetic
2 : not perceived by the senses insensible perspiration

Other Words from insensible

insensibility \ (ˌ)in-​ˌsen(t)-​sə-​ˈbil-​ət-​ē How to pronounce insensible (audio) \ noun, plural insensibilities

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Nglish: Translation of insensible for Spanish Speakers

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