sym·​met·​ri·​cal | \sə-ˈme-tri-kəl \
variants: or symmetric \sə-​ˈme-​trik \

Definition of symmetrical 

1 : having, involving, or exhibiting symmetry

2 : having corresponding points whose connecting lines are bisected by a given point or perpendicularly bisected by a given line or plane symmetrical curves

3 symmetric : being such that the terms or variables may be interchanged without altering the value, character, or truth symmetric equations R is a symmetric relation if aRb implies bRa

4a : capable of division by a longitudinal plane into similar halves symmetrical plant parts

b : having the same number of members in each whorl of floral leaves symmetrical flowers

5 : affecting corresponding parts simultaneously and similarly symmetrical rash

6 : exhibiting symmetry in a structural formula especially : being a derivative with groups substituted symmetrically in the molecule

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Other Words from symmetrical

symmetrically \sə-​ˈme-​tri-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb
symmetricalness \sə-​ˈme-​tri-​kəl-​nəs \ noun

Examples of symmetrical in a Sentence

The human body is symmetrical.

Recent Examples on the Web

The curves were symmetrical, indicating the best work was equally likely to come before or after the second-best. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Creative types all go through hot streaks of superior production," 11 July 2018 Like Le Jardin Plume, the grass garden at Kew, the Royal Botanic Gardens in Richmond, England, avoids forcing ornamental grasses into rigid, symmetrical grids, a tired modern trope. Amy Merrick, WSJ, "Fall’s Best Blade Plans," 5 Oct. 2018 Stroll end-to-end for the full effect and to appreciate the symmetrical beauty of the space. Melissa Liebling-goldberg, Condé Nast Traveler, "19 Best Paris Walking Tours," 3 Mar. 2018 The ancient ancestors of insects probably had relatively symmetrical body segments, each with a pair of legs. Asher Elbein, New York Times, "Insects Flew Before Anything Else Did. So How Did They Get Their Wings?," 26 Mar. 2018 Playing off the windows are symmetrical side tables on both sides of the couch and decorative plates hanging overhead. Louisville Courier Journal, The Courier-Journal, "Blast from the past: This Glenmary home is a collector's paradise," 28 June 2018 On Friday, China is set to slap levies on $34 billion in American goods like soybeans in response to a symmetrical imposition of tariffs by the United States on Chinese goods. Rachel Van Dongen, Washington Post, "The Daily 202: Trump's trade war is getting very real," 3 July 2018 The second installment of the chorus is met with the flashing of a blinding light and symmetrical shots of the dancers walking in a triangular shape. Lilly Milman, Billboard, "Alessia Cara Drops Dystopian 'Growing Pains' Music Video: Watch," 20 June 2018 Today's gigabit cable offerings don't support symmetrical download and upload speeds, though that could change after future updates to DOCSIS. Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica, "Charter’s gigabit cable with no data caps is ready for 27 million homes," 26 June 2018

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

1653, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

29 Nov 2018

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The first known use of symmetrical was in 1653

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English Language Learners Definition of symmetrical

: having sides or halves that are the same : having or showing symmetry


sym·​met·​ri·​cal | \sə-ˈme-tri-kəl \
variants: or symmetric \-​rik \

Kids Definition of symmetrical

: having or showing symmetry a symmetrical shape


sym·​met·​ri·​cal | \sə-ˈme-tri-kəl \
variants: or symmetric \-​trik \

Medical Definition of symmetrical 

: having, involving, or exhibiting symmetry: as

a : affecting corresponding parts simultaneously and similarly a symmetrical rash

b : exhibiting symmetry in a structural formula especially : being a derivative with groups substituted symmetrically in the molecule

Other Words from symmetrical

symmetrically \-​tri-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on symmetrical

Spanish Central: Translation of symmetrical

Nglish: Translation of symmetrical for Spanish Speakers

Comments on symmetrical

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


to move with a clumsy heavy tread

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