vis·​i·​ble | \ ˈvi-zə-bəl How to pronounce visible (audio) \

Definition of visible

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : capable of being seen stars visible to the naked eye
b : situated in the region of the electromagnetic spectrum perceptible to human vision visible light used of radiation having a wavelength between about 400 nanometers and 700 nanometers
2a : exposed to view the visible horizon
b(1) : conspicuous has played a highly visible role in the negotiations
(2) : well-known a highly visible politician
3 : capable of being discovered or perceived : recognizable no visible means of support
4 : accessible sense 2 visible resources
5 : devised to keep a particular part or item always in full view or readily seen or referred to a visible index


plural visibles

Definition of visible (Entry 2 of 2)

: a visible person or thing : someone or something that can be seen or perceived He achieved important results in both these endeavors, which, being visible, have received ample notice as the visibles of history usually do …— Barbara W. Tuchman

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Other Words from visible


visibleness noun
visibly \ ˈvi-​zə-​blē How to pronounce visibly (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for visible

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of visible in a Sentence

Adjective The ship was not visible through the fog. The ship was barely visible. The patient showed no visible symptoms. There was a visible change in his mood. They played a highly visible role in the negotiations.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The most visible component of NRMN is its virtual mentoring network, which uses an internet interface, a database, and an algorithm to match interested students with candidate mentors pulled from a nationwide pool. Jeffrey Mervis, Science | AAAS, "NIH-funded network struggles to use mentoring to foster diversity," 24 Oct. 2017 The post is a highly visible one, thanks to the city’s global reach, the high concentration of media outlets, and the presence of major financial and cultural institutions. Matt Ford, The Atlantic, "The Problem With Electing Prosecutors," 16 Oct. 2017 Temples are the most visible LDS structures, though the Treasure Valley is dotted with the familiar meetinghouses. Glenna Christensen, idahostatesman, "Newest Idaho LDS temple will open soon and be available for tours," 13 Oct. 2017 In front of Aladdin Cafe, 1021 Massachusetts St., a pool of blood was visible. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, "If Newtown Wasn't Enough, Why Would Las Vegas Be Enough?," 2 Oct. 2017 These pressures create perverse incentives for developing countries to pursue shallow but highly visible reforms — for example, the establishment of a nominally independent anti-corruption agency or the passage of anti-human trafficking legislation. Mark Buntaine, Washington Post, "Why international aid so often falls short — and sometimes makes things worse," 19 Sep. 2017 Very little filling should be visible; the dough will shrink, and these gaps will widen as pie bakes. Rick Martinez, Bon Appetit, "BA's Best Blueberry Pie," 19 July 2017 Contractors looking for lumber to expand the Canadian railroad discovered visible silver in the loose rock. Danielle Bochove,, "The Canadian Ghost Town That Tesla Is Bringing Back to Life," 31 Oct. 2017 Here's an excerpt: But Trump's anger Monday was visible to those who interacted with him, and the mood in the corridors of the White House was one of weariness and fear of the unknown. Callum Borchers, Washington Post, "Trump’s real leak problem is not with Mueller’s team. It’s with his own.," 31 Oct. 2017

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1614, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for visible


Middle English, from Middle French or Latin; Middle French, from Latin visibilis, from visus, past participle of vidēre to see

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Time Traveler for visible

Time Traveler

The first known use of visible was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Visible.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for visible


How to pronounce visible (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of visible

: able to be seen
: easily seen or understood
: known to or noticed by the public


vis·​i·​ble | \ ˈvi-zə-bəl How to pronounce visible (audio) \

Kids Definition of visible

1 : capable of being seen Getting the shutters open was another matter. Though no fastener was visible, they were locked.— Franklin W. Dixon, The Secret Panel
2 : easily seen or understood : obvious Her anger was quite visible.

Other Words from visible

visibly \ -​blē \ adverb


vis·​i·​ble | \ ˈviz-ə-bəl How to pronounce visible (audio) \

Medical Definition of visible

1 : capable of being seen : perceptible to vision particulates visible to the naked eye
2 : situated in the visible spectrum visible light

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Comments on visible

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