palpable

adjective
pal·​pa·​ble | \ ˈpal-pə-bəl \

Definition of palpable

1 : capable of being touched or felt : tangible palpable lymph nodes
2 : easily perceptible : noticeable a palpable difference The attraction between them was palpable.
3 : easily perceptible by the mind : manifest

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Other Words from palpable

palpability \ ˌpal-​pə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē \ noun
palpably \ ˈpal-​pə-​blē \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for palpable

perceptible, sensible, palpable, tangible, appreciable, ponderable mean apprehensible as real or existent. perceptible applies to what can be discerned by the senses often to a minimal extent. a perceptible difference in sound to a careful listener sensible applies to whatever is clearly apprehended through the senses or impresses itself strongly on the mind. an abrupt, sensible drop in temperature palpable applies either to what has physical substance or to what is obvious and unmistakable. the tension in the air was almost palpable tangible suggests what is capable of being handled or grasped both physically and mentally. no tangible evidence of UFOs appreciable applies to what is distinctly discernible by the senses or definitely measurable. an appreciable increase in income ponderable suggests having definitely measurable weight or importance. exerted a ponderable influence on world events

Feel Out the Definition of Palpable

The word palpable has been used in English since the 14th century. It derives from the Latin word palpare, meaning "to stroke" or "to caress"—the same root that gives us the word palpitation. The Latin verb is also a linguistic ancestor of the verb feel. Palpable can be used to describe things that can be felt through the skin, such as a person's pulse, but even more frequently it is used in reference to things that cannot be touched but are still so easy to perceive that it is as though they could be touched—such as "a palpable tension in the air."

Examples of palpable in a Sentence

A positive patch-test result, measured by a visible and palpable localized response, denotes a delayed hypersensitivity response … — Simon Kallal et al., New England Journal of Medicine, 7 Feb. 2008 When I'm back in nature after months of walking around on concrete and living in boxes, I feel a palpable internal shift. — Al Gore, An Inconvenient Truth, 2006 As pushcart vendors manned the stadium concourses, ringing bicycle bells and selling E-lados ice cream in paper cups, and concessionaires poured shots of Cutty Sark and blended piña coladas, there was a palpable sense of spirit. — Daniel G. Habib, Sports Illustrated, 21 Apr. 2003 I felt a palpable sense of relief. The attraction between them was palpable. There was a palpable excitement in the air as the town prepared for the festival.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Frustration with the federal government’s approach has been palpable in western Canada. Paul Vieira, WSJ, "Canada Reveals Finance Package to Contend with Low Oil Prices," 18 Dec. 2018 Indeed, as the technician at Mission Control began narrating the final steps of the landing process, the mood in the room turned palpable tense. Paul Roberts, The Seattle Times, "Mars landing is a nail-biter for Redmond rocket engineers," 26 Nov. 2018 Note that Christine Blasey Ford *still,* in this context, felt the need to make a lighthearted joke to ease the palpable discomfort of the men around her. Jenny Hollander, Marie Claire, "Listening to Dr. Ford's Testimony, People Are Heartbroken," 27 Sep. 2018 In Thursday morning’s meeting of House Republicans, lawmakers reacted with palpable consternation to Trump’s initial tweet, according to attendees. Washington Post, "Trump’s ‘ping-pong’ on surveillance law sets off a 101-minute scramble," 6 Mar. 2018 But, recapitulating his problem from four years ago, the lack of enthusiasm for a Biden presidency from Obama’s inner circle is palpable. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "The comically large 2020 Democratic field, explained," 17 Dec. 2018 There have been a lot of rumors and leaks about the iPad, which has led to a palpable level of excitement for this event. Dieter Bohn, The Verge, "The stakes for the new MacBook are much higher than for the iPad," 30 Oct. 2018 Collin, who was recently released from prison, returns to a city that looks and feels alienating since so much has changed during the time he was incarcerated—a sentiment made palpable by what ends up on screen. Diana Budds, Curbed, "How two movies portray Oakland’s rapid change," 29 Aug. 2018 As the designer odyssey moves from New York to Paris, patterns are palpable—another baby bang here, another sprinkling of glitter there—until finally, everything materializes into one divine, season-defining tessellation. Vogue, "The Best Street Style Beauty Looks From the Spring 2019 Shows," 4 Oct. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for palpable

Middle English, from Late Latin palpabilis, from Latin palpare to stroke, caress — more at feel

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Dictionary Entries near palpable

palouser

paloverde

palp

palpable

palpableness

palpal

palpal organ

Statistics for palpable

Last Updated

13 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for palpable

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

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More Definitions for palpable

palpable

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of palpable

: obvious and noticeable

palpable

adjective
pal·​pa·​ble | \ ˈpal-pə-bəl \

Medical Definition of palpable

: capable of being touched or felt especially : capable of being examined by palpation the tip of the spleen was questionably palpable Journal of the American Medical Association

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More from Merriam-Webster on palpable

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for palpable

Spanish Central: Translation of palpable

Nglish: Translation of palpable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of palpable for Arabic Speakers

Comments on palpable

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