ris·​i·​ble ˈri-zə-bəl How to pronounce risible (audio)
: capable of laughing
: disposed to laugh
: arousing or provoking laughter
especially : laughable
: associated with, relating to, or used in laughter
risible muscles
risibly adverb

Did you know?

If someone makes a ridiculous remark about your risible muscles, they are 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 as well as ridiculous and deride.

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 Google’s risible response to the charge of privacy violations is that because humans do not scan users’ emails, there is no privacy violation. WIRED, 30 July 2023 The risible topic of Barrett’s still-unpublished literary work: how justices should keep their personal feelings out of their jurisprudence. Walter Shapiro, The New Republic, 19 July 2023 The actors, all of whom get their risible moments, also include Chris Herbie Holland, Adrianna Mitchell, Calvin Leon Smith and Benja Kay Thomas. Peter Marks, Washington Post, 20 Apr. 2023 Similarly risible is the authors’ suggestion that Israel could be pressured into relinquishing its Jewish identity if Washington ceased defending it at the United Nations. Michael Oren, Foreign Affairs, 31 May 2023 The criticism is risible for multiple reasons, not the least of which being that without that House majority, neither the stimulus bill nor Obamacare, Barack Obama’s sole legislative achievement during his eight years in office, would have ever been passed. Jeffrey Blehar, Washington Examiner, 31 Dec. 2020 These claims are risible. Fintan O’Toole, The Atlantic, 16 Dec. 2021 The whole charade is risible. Karol Markowicz, Washington Examiner, 17 Dec. 2020 In the cow-like atmosphere of sports journalism, only Fox's Troy Aikman has dared to say what millions of fans know: that the league's separate mask policy for coaches and players makes is risible, not least because both groups are subject to the same daily testing regime. Matthew Walther, TheWeek, 14 Nov. 2020 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'risible.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


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

First Known Use

1557, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of risible was in 1557


Dictionary Entries Near risible

Cite this Entry

“Risible.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/risible. Accessed 28 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


ris·​i·​ble ˈriz-ə-bəl How to pronounce risible (audio)
: able to laugh
: arousing laughter : funny
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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