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

Keep scrolling for more

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
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

Guests lucky enough to be invited to celebrate her 22nd birthday over the weekend in Italy aboard a yacht were treated to all kinds of visual and sensual thrills. Sonja Haller, USA TODAY, "Stormi sings sweetly to mom Kylie Jenner at lavish yacht party celebrating 22nd birthday," 11 Aug. 2019 Turn ons: Sexting, quick make-out sessions in the elevators, massaging the head, ears Moon in Taurus Your Moon is in the sign ruled by Venus giving you that sweet and sensual vibe. Rebecca Gordon, Harper's BAZAAR, "Why Your Moon Sign Is More Important Than You Think," 18 June 2019 Gormé sings in a soft, sensual croon that is miles away from her showstopping English style. Randy Cordova, azcentral, "Remembering Eydie Gormé, Trio Los Panchos and the beloved 'Sabor a Mí’," 21 July 2019 The choreography is continuously lush, composed mostly of a sensual, flowing, easy-feeling melding of jazz and modern dance. Janine Parker, BostonGlobe.com, "David Roussève’s REALITY pays tribute to an unsung hero," 5 July 2019 The photos, donated by a regular years ago, are imagery of lesbians for lesbians — intimate and sensual — a shift from woman-on-woman erotica staged for men. Savannah Eadens, The Courier-Journal, "It's 'Cheers, but queer.' Louisville’s last lesbian bar reflects shift in LGBTQ nightlife," 28 June 2019 Jennifer Lopez pulled Lloyd from the audience to the stage at Madison Square Garden in New York City on Friday night, working her sensual moves on the soccer star. Mesfin Fekadu, Houston Chronicle, "Former Dash player celebrates World Cup win with lap dance from J. Lo," 13 July 2019 Researchers have also found a fresco depicting a sensual scene involving the Roman god Jupiter and Leda and the remains of a petrified horse recently. Fox News, "Pompeii ruins 'hiding 10 unexploded WW2 bombs,' archaeologists warn," 9 July 2019 The sensual urges of the incarcerated are often demonized, dismissed as criminal or undeserved, but Photo Requests from Solitary regards them without judgment. Doreen St. Félix, The New Yorker, "Photo Requests from Solitary Confinement," 8 July 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.

See More

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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about sensual

Statistics for sensual

Last Updated

15 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sensual

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for sensual

sensual

adjective

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

Keep scrolling for more

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

Comments on sensual

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to move or obtain by small maneuvers

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Summer 2019 Words of the Day Quiz

  • a-bowl-of-peach-sorbet-with-cut-peaches-next-to-it
  • Which is a synonym of desideratum?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!