1

sensible

adjective sen·si·ble \ ˈsen(t)-sə-bəl \
Updated on: 14 Nov 2017

Definition of sensible

1 :of a kind to be felt or perceived: such as
a :perceptible to the senses or to reason or understanding
  • felt a sensible chill
  • her distress was sensible from her manner
b archaic :perceptibly large :considerable
c :perceptible as real or material :substantial
  • the sensible world in which we live
2 a :capable of receiving sensory impressions
  • sensible to pain
b :receptive to external influences :sensitive
  • the most sensible reaches of the spirit
3 a :perceiving through the senses or mind :cognizant
  • sensible of the increasing heat
; also :convinced by perceived evidence :satisfied
  • sensible of my error
b :emotionally aware and responsive
  • we are sensible of your problems
4 :having, containing, or indicative of good sense or reason :rational, reasonable
  • sensible people
  • made a sensible answer
5 :designed for practical ends (such as comfort) rather than for appearance
  • sensible shoes

sensibleness

noun

sensibly

play \ˈsen(t)-sə-blē\ adverb

Examples of sensible in a Sentence

  1. My teacher gave me some sensible advice.

  2. She was sensible enough to stop driving when she got too tired.

  3. She wore a sensible coat.

Recent Examples of sensible from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of sensible

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin sensibilis, from sensus, past participle of sentire to feel

Synonym Discussion of sensible

material, physical, corporeal, phenomenal, sensible, objective mean of or belonging to actuality. material implies formation out of tangible matter; used in contrast with spiritual or ideal it may connote the mundane, crass, or grasping.
    • material values
physical applies to what is perceived directly by the senses and may contrast with mental, spiritual, or imaginary.
    • the physical benefits of exercise
corporeal implies having the tangible qualities of a body such as shape, size, or resistance to force.
    • artists have portrayed angels as corporeal beings
phenomenal applies to what is known or perceived through the senses rather than by intuition or rational deduction.
    • scientists concerned with the phenomenal world
sensible stresses the capability of readily or forcibly impressing the senses.
    • the earth's rotation is not sensible to us
objective may stress material or independent existence apart from a subject perceiving it.
    • no objective evidence of damage
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
aware, cognizant, conscious, sensible, alive, awake mean having knowledge of something. aware implies vigilance in observing or alertness in drawing inferences from what one experiences.
    • aware of changes in climate
cognizant implies having special or certain knowledge as from firsthand sources.
    • not fully cognizant of the facts
conscious implies that one is focusing one's attention on something or is even preoccupied by it.
    • conscious that my heart was pounding
sensible implies direct or intuitive perceiving especially of intangibles or of emotional states or qualities.
    • sensible of a teacher's influence
alive adds to sensible the implication of acute sensitivity to something.
    • alive to the thrill of danger
awake implies that one has become alive to something and is on the alert.
    • a country always awake to the threat of invasion
wise, sage, sapient, judicious, prudent, sensible, sane mean having or showing sound judgment. wise suggests great understanding of people and of situations and unusual discernment and judgment in dealing with them.
    • wise beyond his tender years
sage suggests wide experience, great learning, and wisdom.
    • the sage advice of my father
sapient suggests great sagacity and discernment.
    • the sapient musings of an old philosopher
judicious stresses a capacity for reaching wise decisions or just conclusions.
    • judicious parents using kindness and discipline in equal measure
prudent suggests the exercise of restraint guided by sound practical wisdom and discretion.
    • a prudent decision to wait out the storm
sensible applies to action guided and restrained by good sense and rationality.
    • a sensible woman who was not fooled by flattery
sane stresses mental soundness, rationality, and levelheadedness.
    • remained sane even in times of crises

2

sensible

noun

Definition of sensible

:something that can be sensed

Recent Examples of sensible from the Web

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

First Known Use of sensible

15th century


SENSIBLE Defined for English Language Learners

sensible

adjective

Definition of sensible for English Language Learners

  • : having or showing good sense or judgment

  • : designed to be comfortable, useful, etc., rather than stylish


SENSIBLE Defined for Kids

sensible

adjective sen·si·ble \ ˈsen-sə-bəl \

Definition of sensible for Students

1 :showing or containing good sense or judgment
  • He was a sensible dog, and knew what to do when he met strangers.
  • —Laura Ingalls Wilder, Little House on the Prairie
2 :designed for a practical purpose rather than for appearance
  • sensible shoes
3 :capable of feeling or perceiving
  • The patient was sensible to pain.

sensibly

\-blē\ adverb

Medical Dictionary

sensible

adjective sen·si·ble \ ˈsen(t)-sə-bəl \

medical Definition of sensible

1 :perceptible to the senses or to reason or understanding
  • felt a sensible chill
2 :capable of receiving sensory impressions
  • sensible to pain


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