psy·​cho·​log·​i·​cal | \ ˌsī-kə-ˈlä-ji-kəl \
variants: or less commonly psychologic \ ˌsī-​kə-​ˈlä-​jik \

Definition of psychological

1a : of or relating to psychology
b : mental
2 : directed toward the will or toward the mind specifically in its conative function psychological warfare

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Other Words from psychological

psychologically \ ˌsī-​kə-​ˈlä-​ji-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for psychological


cerebral, inner, intellectual, interior, internal, mental



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Examples of psychological in a Sentence

a psychological rather than a physical condition suffered from psychological disorders all of his life

Recent Examples on the Web

Life in an orphanage could have a lasting psychological and cultural impact on children, said James Leibold, an expert on Chinese ethnic policy at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia. Yanan Wang And Dake Kang, Fox News, "China distances children from families to subdue Muslim west," 20 Sep. 2018 The government also fears a negative psychological impact on French workers who would see lower monthly earnings on their pay slips even though their annual tax liability would be the same. Sylvie Corbet, The Seattle Times, "France’s Macron encounters obstacle course at home," 4 Sep. 2018 The section covering the institutionalization of children delves into the psychological impact on children who do not get the attention and nurturing that would be more likely in a family setting. Carol Morello,, "In Human Trafficking Report, State Dept. Warns Against Separating Children From Parents," 28 June 2018 But new research suggests that isolated comments, lingering stares, and far more minor behaviors that send devaluing messagescan cause a negative psychological impact as serious as the effects of physical or other types of harassment. Cara Kelly, USA TODAY, "'Death by a thousand cuts': How minor incidents of harassment create toxic environments for women," 12 June 2018 Authorities said the man was transported to an area hospital with minor injuries and for a psychological evaluation. Jim Newton, Lake County News-Sun, "Lake County sheriff's deputies subdue agitated Beach Park man using beanbag shotgun," 7 May 2018 She's been ordered to undergo psychological evaluation in that case, records show. Stephen English, star-telegram, "She tried to run a woman over, police say. Instead, she drove into a store," 17 Apr. 2018 The Ceres jumpsuit definitely had a psychological impact on me. Lizzie Plaugic, The Verge, "These three designers make wearables that measure the world around you," 14 Apr. 2018 Courtesy Everett Collection Known to many, or at least to me, as the more relatable, more British Carrie Bradshaw, Bridget Jones is the single person’s psychological id made human. Danny Murphy, Marie Claire, "Recasted: Who Should Star in a Bridget Jones's Diary Remake?," 18 Dec. 2018

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

circa 1688, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Last Updated

8 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for psychological

The first known use of psychological was circa 1688

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English Language Learners Definition of psychological

: of or relating to the mind

: of or relating to the study of the mind : of or relating to psychology


psy·​cho·​log·​i·​cal | \ ˌsī-kə-ˈlä-ji-kəl \

Kids Definition of psychological

: of or relating to psychology or the mind psychological research psychological distress


psy·​cho·​log·​i·​cal | \ ˌsī-kə-ˈläj-i-kəl \
variants: also psychologic \ -​ik \

Medical Definition of psychological

1a : relating to, characteristic of, directed toward, influencing, arising in, or acting through the mind especially in its affective or cognitive functions psychological phenomena the psychological aspects of a problem
b : directed toward the will or toward the mind specifically in its conative function psychological warfare
2 : relating to, concerned with, deriving from, or used in psychology psychological research psychological tests a psychological clinic

Other Words from psychological

psychologically \ -​ē \ adverb

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What made you want to look up psychological? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


tremendous in size, volume, or degree

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