spher·​i·​cal | \ ˈsfir-i-kəl How to pronounce spherical (audio) , ˈsfer-\

Definition of spherical

1 : having the form of a sphere or of one of its segments
2 : relating to or dealing with a sphere or its properties

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Other Words from spherical

spherically \ ˈsfir-​i-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce spherically (audio) , ˈsfer-​ \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for spherical


global, globular, round



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Did You Know?

Something spherical is like a sphere in being round, or more or less round, in three dimensions. Apples and oranges are both spherical, for example, even though they're never perfectly round. A spheroid has a roughly spherical shape; so an asteroid, for instance, is often spheroidal—fairly round, but lumpy.

Examples of spherical in a Sentence

the planet Earth is not, in fact, perfectly spherical

Recent Examples on the Web

Shell design, the pitch itself The team also built the baseball-looking shell using a spherical structure built out of plastic strips first with papier mache put over it. Alec Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "A robot created by Arrowhead High School students will throw out the first pitch at tonight's Brewers game," 21 June 2019 Scientists often assume the first stars ended their lives as spherical supernovae. Rachel Crowell, Scientific American, "The Universe’s First Stars Exploded in Strange Ways," 31 May 2019 Because the droplet is spherical and its surfaces are not parallel, all this skidding in and out happens at slightly different angles for the different wavelengths of visible light, so the exiting white light disperses into a spectrum of colors. Gemma Tarlach, Discover Magazine, "20 Things You Didn't Know About Rainbows," 22 Apr. 2019 See the giant spherical Moeraki Boulders on a visit to Koekohe Beach, and ride a high-wheeled penny-farthing bicycle. National Geographic, "New Zealand High School Expedition," 17 June 2019 In lieu of placards, the experience immerses visitors in a multimedia narrative, through innovative films that take up spherical walls, sounds, interactive displays, and even scents. Jenna Scatena, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why Doha Is Much More Than a Stopover Destination," 4 June 2019 That constant motion, says Zambito, also helped give the sand particles their spherical shape. Geoffrey Giller, Discover Magazine, "The Midwestern Sand Mines Feeding the Fracking Industry," 26 Apr. 2019 The collection includes a sofa and two chairs, each designed with patchwork and made in modern, spherical shapes. Brooke Bobb, Vogue, "These Chairs Were Designed Using Recycled Clothing From Maison Margiela, Off-White, Raf Simons, and More," 22 Apr. 2019 However, after Mikimoto Kokichi invented the perfectly spherical cultured pearl in 1893, the market for real pearls eventually waned and then more or less crashed with the stock market in 1929. Hamish Bowles, Vogue, "Hamish Bowles Spends a Week in Qatar and Is Dazzled by Doha," 2 Apr. 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for spherical

Last Updated

10 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for spherical

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

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English Language Learners Definition of spherical

: having the shape of a sphere


spher·​i·​cal | \ ˈsfir-i-kəl How to pronounce spherical (audio) , ˈsfer-\

Kids Definition of spherical

: relating to or having the form of a sphere

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Comments on spherical

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


something desired as essential

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