sensual

adjective
sen·​su·​al | \ ˈsen(t)-sh(ə-)wəl How to pronounce sensual (audio) , -shəl \

Definition of sensual

1 : relating to or consisting in the gratification of the senses or the indulgence of appetite : fleshly
3a : devoted to or preoccupied with the senses or appetites
c : deficient in moral, spiritual, or intellectual interests : worldly especially : irreligious

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Other Words from sensual

sensuality \ ˌsen(t)-​shə-​ˈwa-​lə-​tē How to pronounce sensuality (audio) \ noun
sensually \ ˈsen(t)-​sh(ə-​)wə-​lē How to pronounce sensually (audio) , ˈsen-​shə-​lē \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for sensual

carnal, fleshly, sensual, animal mean having a relation to the body. carnal may mean only this but more often connotes derogatorily an action or manifestation of a person's lower nature. a slave to carnal desires fleshly is less derogatory than carnal. a saint who had experienced fleshly temptations sensual may apply to any gratification of a bodily desire or pleasure but commonly implies sexual appetite with absence of the spiritual or intellectual. fleshpots providing sensual delights animal stresses the physical as distinguished from the rational nature of a person. led a mindless animal existence

sensuous, sensual, luxurious, voluptuous mean relating to or providing pleasure through gratification of the senses. sensuous implies gratification of the senses for the sake of aesthetic pleasure. the sensuous delights of great music sensual tends to imply the gratification of the senses or the indulgence of the physical appetites as ends in themselves. a life devoted to sensual pleasures luxurious suggests the indulgence of sensuous pleasure inducing bodily ease and languor. a luxurious hotel voluptuous implies more strongly an abandonment especially to sensual pleasure. a voluptuous feast

Examples of sensual in a Sentence

A sharp observer with a pleasing eye for sensual detail, Jaffrey weaves a richly textured story in which she effortlessly mingles quotidian dramas with historic events including the partition of India. — Michelle Green, People, 6 Nov. 2006 And Rousseau, in his Confessions, wrote of the sensual pleasure he found in simple meals of peasant cheeses and breads. — Andrea Lee, Gourmet, May 2004 Certain fragrances apparently heighten sensual experiences. the sensual feel of a velvet shirt against the skin
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Recent Examples on the Web Known for bright colors and sensual cutting, Ungaro, whose father was a tailor, was an understated trendsetter, often anticipating fashion’s directions, showing it on runways a season before others. Peter Mikelbank, PEOPLE.com, "French Fashion Designer Emanuel Ungaro Dead at 86," 22 Dec. 2019 The effect is deeply upsetting; though the actors are covered in fur and sporting twitchy tails, their proportions are still human, so the actors appear discomfitingly sensual while dancing and serenading one another. Isaac Feldberg, Fortune, "What to Watch (and Skip) In Theaters and on Netflix This Weekend," 18 Dec. 2019 Then, there is Elana’s sensual duet with a blue satin dress—a sharp contrast to Barrio’s plain black attire. Jennifer Homans, The New Yorker, "Noche Flamenca Gets Deeper with Age," 30 Dec. 2019 His touch is not as luscious or seductive as that of Alexandre Tharaud, whose recording of 19 of the sonatas (Erato, 2011) offers more mystery and sensual atmosphere, as in the dark guitarlike strumming of the G Minor sonata (K. 8). Zachary Woolfe, New York Times, "A Sprawling Recording Focuses on Scarlatti’s Sonatas," 27 Dec. 2019 But there’s a personal rush to their intimate conversations, a connection dramatized in a ludirously sensual extreme close-up of their two hands touching. Darren Franich, EW.com, "Star Wars rewatch: The Last Jedi destroys a legend to rebuild the same legend," 16 Dec. 2019 Made in small batches in California, each sensual scent is imbued with plants and essential oils from the world round. Zoe Ruffner, Vogue, "11 Swoon-Worthy Beauty Gifts for the Friend Who Has Everything," 12 Dec. 2019 He has been known to teach the sensual Argentinian dance on talk shows with hosts like Conan O'Brien. Kirby Adams, The Courier-Journal, "'Curb Your Enthusiasm' comedian promises to 'bring the ruckus' to Louisville," 17 Oct. 2019 As a result, the couple’s singular love scene is anxiety-inducing rather than sensual. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, "The Best Part of Queen & Slim Is the Soundtrack," 20 Nov. 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sensual

Middle English, from Late Latin sensualis, from Latin sensus sense

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Time Traveler for sensual

Time Traveler

The first known use of sensual was in the 15th century

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Statistics for sensual

Last Updated

17 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Sensual.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sensual. Accessed 26 January 2020.

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More Definitions for sensual

sensual

adjective
How to pronounce sensual (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sensual

: relating to, devoted to, or producing physical or sexual pleasure

sensual

adjective
sen·​su·​al | \ ˈsen-shə-wəl How to pronounce sensual (audio) \

Kids Definition of sensual

: relating to the pleasing of the senses

sensual

adjective
sen·​su·​al | \ ˈsench-(ə-)wəl, ˈsen-shəl How to pronounce sensual (audio) \

Medical Definition of sensual

2 : relating to or consisting in the gratification of the senses or the indulgence of appetite
3 : devoted to or preoccupied with the senses or appetites

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More from Merriam-Webster on sensual

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sensual

Spanish Central: Translation of sensual

Nglish: Translation of sensual for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sensual for Arabic Speakers

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