stimulus

noun
stim·​u·​lus | \ˈstim-yə-ləs \
plural stimuli\ ˈstim-​yə-​ˌlī , -​ˌlē \

Definition of stimulus 

: something that rouses or incites to activity: such as

a : incentive

b : stimulant sense 1

c : an agent (such as an environmental change) that directly influences the activity of a living organism or one of its parts (as by exciting a sensory organ or evoking muscular contraction or glandular secretion)

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Examples of stimulus in a Sentence

The pay raise was a stimulus for production. Heat and light are physical stimuli. The dog responded to the stimulus of the ringing bell.
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Recent Examples on the Web

President Donald Trump’s tax cuts have provided a dose of stimulus this year, though it has been tilted significantly toward wealthy individuals and corporations. Josh Boak, BostonGlobe.com, "US economy added 213,000 jobs in June," 6 July 2018 President Donald Trump's tax cuts have provided a dose of stimulus this year, though it has been tilted significantly toward wealthy individuals and corporations. Josh Boak, chicagotribune.com, "U.S. added 213,000 jobs in June; unemployment rose to 4 percent," 6 July 2018 The massive Trump tax cut should provide a huge stimulus to an economy already rushing ahead at full employment, boosting profits and growth. Steven Mufson And Emily Rauhala, Houston Chronicle, "Dow Jones index ends wild week by climbing back past 24,000," 9 Feb. 2018 In bad times the scope for fiscal stimulus in America would be limited by an already large budget deficit. The Economist, "Why it makes sense to invest in Treasury bonds," 26 May 2018 When something disrupts that communication, the brain misinterprets normal signals, which can cause the body to become hypersensitive to stimuli detected by nerves in the gut, causing pain. Sumathi Reddy, WSJ, "A Surprise Medical Solution: Hypnosis," 7 May 2018 The biggest debacle in the U.S. solar industry took place in the Bay Area, where solar panel startup Solyndra fell apart after receiving a $500 million loan guarantee from the Obama administration as part of the economic stimulus package. Dale Kasler, sacbee, "Trump’s new tariff could hurt California’s effort to go solar," 23 Jan. 2018 At that meeting, policymakers decided the 19-country eurozone economy was strong enough to phase out their 2.4 trillion-euro ($2.8 trillion) bond-purchase stimulus at year-end. Washington Post, "Trade war fears a clear concern of European bank officials," 12 July 2018 Another concern is that the huge corporate tax cut, and ensuing deficit spending, has taken away a key stimulus opportunity that could have been used to re-energize the economy. Phillip Molnar, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Is a flattening yield curve a sign of a coming recession?," 6 July 2018

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

1684, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for stimulus

Latin

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Statistics for stimulus

Last Updated

2 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for stimulus

The first known use of stimulus was in 1684

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More Definitions for stimulus

stimulus

noun

English Language Learners Definition of stimulus

: something that causes something else to happen, develop, or become more active

: something that causes a change or a reaction

stimulus

noun
stim·​u·​lus | \ˈsti-myə-ləs \
plural stimuli\ -​ˌlī, -​ˌlē \

Kids Definition of stimulus

1 : something that stirs or urges to action The reward was a stimulus for greater effort.

2 : an influence that acts usually from outside the body to partly change bodily activity (as by exciting a receptor or sense organ) Light, heat, and sound are common physical stimuli.

stimulus

noun
stim·​u·​lus | \ˈstim-yə-ləs \
plural stimuli\ -​ˌlī , -​ˌlē \

Medical Definition of stimulus 

2 : an agent (as an environmental change) that directly influences the activity of living protoplasm (as by exciting a sensory organ or evoking muscular contraction or glandular secretion) a visual stimulus

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