ris·​i·​ble | \ ˈri-zə-bəl How to pronounce risible (audio) \

Definition of risible

1a : capable of laughing
b : disposed to laugh
2 : arousing or provoking laughter especially : laughable
3 : associated with, relating to, or used in laughter risible muscles

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Other Words from risible

risibly \ ˈri-​zə-​blē How to pronounce risibly (audio) \ adverb

Did You Know?

If someone makes a ridiculous remark about your risible muscles, he or she is not necessarily deriding your physique. Risible can also mean "associated with laughter," so risible muscles can simply be the ones used for laughing. (You've also got a set of risorius muscles around your mouth that help you smile.) Next time you find something laughable, tip your hat to ridēre, the Latin verb meaning "to laugh" that gave us risible (and ridiculous and deride, by the way).

Examples of risible in a Sentence

The suggestion was downright risible. a risible comment that made the whole class laugh
Recent Examples on the Web Maybe asking someone to describe the current online dispensation to a medieval farmer isn’t so risible after all. Jennifer Szalai, New York Times, "‘Uncanny Valley’ Charts a Tech Pilgrim’s Progress," 31 Dec. 2019 Stevens, in his dissent, wrote that an attempt to offer such a reading in the context of the Second Amendment is particularly risible, since no piece of American law could be more clearly contoured by a social purpose. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, "The Gilroy Shooting and What the Democratic Candidates Should Remember About Justice John Paul Stevens," 30 July 2019 But with the invention of deep neural networks and the massive computational infrastructure of the tech industry, computers relentlessly improved until their outputs no longer appeared risible. Christof Koch, Scientific American, "Will Machines Ever Become Conscious?," 1 Dec. 2019 Some are chic, many are risible; all of it has an exuberant view of the future that marks it as decidedly from the past. Jason Farago, New York Times, "Holiday Museum Guide: Where to See Art This Season," 28 Nov. 2019 But Macron’s pretension to be the embodiment of the popular will is risible. Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review, "Why Isn’t Macron an Illiberal Pinup?," 26 Sep. 2019 Some are chic, many are risible; all of it has an exuberant view of the future that marks it as decidedly from the past. Jason Farago, New York Times, "Back to the Future With Pierre Cardin’s Space-Age Fashion," 22 Aug. 2019 The performance art sequences, which can so easily come across as risible when filmed, are sensitively choreographed and shot here, and are therefore able to retain at least some of their original punch. Jonathan Holland, The Hollywood Reporter, "'This Is Not Berlin' ('Esto no es Berlin'): Film Review," 29 June 2019 The first go-round was the risible 2006 Brett Ratner film X-Men: The Last Stand, which indicated Jean Grey’s turn to darkness by dressing her in a particularly vile-looking corset. David Sims, The Atlantic, "A Slapdash Farewell to the X-Men Series," 6 June 2019

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

1557, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for risible

Late Latin risibilis, from Latin risus, past participle of ridēre to laugh

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Time Traveler for risible

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The first known use of risible was in 1557

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Last Updated

3 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Risible.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/risible. Accessed 27 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for risible


How to pronounce risible (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of risible

formal + disapproving : deserving to be laughed at : very silly or unreasonable

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More from Merriam-Webster on risible

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for risible

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with risible

Spanish Central: Translation of risible

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