presentiment

noun pre·sen·ti·ment \ pri-ˈzen-tə-mənt \
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of presentiment

: a feeling that something will or is about to happen : premonition

presentimental

play \pri-ˌzen-tə-ˈmen-tᵊl\ adjective

presentiment was our Word of the Day on 04/06/2008. Hear the podcast!

Examples of presentiment in a Sentence

  1. a nagging presentiment of danger

Recent Examples of presentiment from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'presentiment.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Did You Know?

Do you ever have presentiments, Mr. Flintwich?' 'I am not sure that I know what you mean by the term, sir,' replied that gentleman. 'Say, in this case, Mr. Flintwich, undefined anticipations of pleasure to come.' 'I can't say I'm sensible of such a sensation at present,' returned Mr. Flintwich, with the utmost gravity. Nothing sensational said here, perhaps, but Mr. Flintwich shows a sensitivity to words that, like "presentiment," are related to the Latin verb sentire, ("to feel"). He uses two of these words, and we've added three more. The quote is from Charles Dickens' Little Dorrit, and the words are "sensible," "sensation," "sensational," "sensitivity," and "sense."

Origin and Etymology of presentiment

French pressentiment, from Middle French, from pressentir to have a presentiment, from Latin praesentire to feel beforehand, from prae- + sentire to feel — more at sense


PRESENTIMENT Defined for English Language Learners

presentiment

noun

Definition of presentiment for English Language Learners

  • : a feeling or belief that something is going to happen



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