adjective sen·si·ble \ˈsen(t)-sə-bəl\

: having or showing good sense or judgment

: designed to be comfortable, useful, etc., rather than stylish

Full Definition of SENSIBLE

:  of a kind to be felt or perceived: as
a :  perceptible to the senses or to reason or understanding <felt a sensible chill> <her distress was sensible from her manner>
b archaic :  perceptibly large :  considerable
c :  perceptible as real or material :  substantial <the sensible world in which we live>
a :  capable of receiving sensory impressions <sensible to pain>
b :  receptive to external influences :  sensitive <the most sensible reaches of the spirit>
a :  perceiving through the senses or mind :  cognizant <sensible of the increasing heat>; also :  convinced by perceived evidence :  satisfied <sensible of my error>
b :  emotionally aware and responsive <we are sensible of your problems>
c :  conscious
:  having, containing, or indicative of good sense or reason :  rational, reasonable <sensible people> <made a sensible answer>
:  designed for practical ends (as comfort) rather than for appearance <sensible shoes>
sen·si·ble·ness noun
sen·si·bly \-blē\ adverb

Origin of SENSIBLE

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin sensibilis, from sensus, past participle of sentire to feel
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of SENSIBLE

material, physical, corporeal, phenomenal, sensible, objective mean of or belonging to actuality. material implies formation out of tangible matter; used in contrast with spiritual or ideal it may connote the mundane, crass, or grasping <material values>. physical applies to what is perceived directly by the senses and may contrast with mental, spiritual, or imaginary <the physical benefits of exercise>. corporeal implies having the tangible qualities of a body such as shape, size, or resistance to force <artists have portrayed angels as corporeal beings>. phenomenal applies to what is known or perceived through the senses rather than by intuition or rational deduction <scientists concerned with the phenomenal world>. sensible stresses the capability of readily or forcibly impressing the senses <the earth's rotation is not sensible to us>. objective may stress material or independent existence apart from a subject perceiving it <no objective evidence of damage>.

perceptible, sensible, palpable, tangible, appreciable, ponderable mean apprehensible as real or existent. perceptible applies to what can be discerned by the senses often to a minimal extent <a perceptible difference in sound to a careful listener>. sensible applies to whatever is clearly apprehended through the senses or impresses itself strongly on the mind <an abrupt, sensible drop in temperature>. palpable applies either to what has physical substance or to what is obvious and unmistakable <the tension in the air was almost palpable>. tangible suggests what is capable of being handled or grasped both physically and mentally <no tangible evidence of UFOs>. appreciable applies to what is distinctly discernible by the senses or definitely measurable <an appreciable increase in income>. ponderable suggests having definitely measurable weight or importance <exerted a ponderable influence on world events>.

aware, cognizant, conscious, sensible, alive, awake mean having knowledge of something. aware implies vigilance in observing or alertness in drawing inferences from what one experiences <aware of changes in climate>. cognizant implies having special or certain knowledge as from firsthand sources <not fully cognizant of the facts>. conscious implies that one is focusing one's attention on something or is even preoccupied by it <conscious that my heart was pounding>. sensible implies direct or intuitive perceiving especially of intangibles or of emotional states or qualities <sensible of a teacher's influence>. alive adds to sensible the implication of acute sensitivity to something <alive to the thrill of danger>. awake implies that one has become alive to something and is on the alert <a country always awake to the threat of invasion>.

wise, sage, sapient, judicious, prudent, sensible, sane mean having or showing sound judgment. wise suggests great understanding of people and of situations and unusual discernment and judgment in dealing with them <wise beyond his tender years>. sage suggests wide experience, great learning, and wisdom <the sage advice of my father>. sapient suggests great sagacity and discernment <the sapient musings of an old philosopher>. judicious stresses a capacity for reaching wise decisions or just conclusions <judicious parents using kindness and discipline in equal measure>. prudent suggests exercise of the restraint of sound practical wisdom and discretion <a prudent decision to wait out the storm>. sensible applies to action guided and restrained by good sense and rationality <a sensible woman who was not fooled by flattery>. sane stresses mental soundness, rationality, and levelheadedness <remained sane even in times of crises>.



Definition of SENSIBLE

:  something that can be sensed

First Known Use of SENSIBLE

SENSIBLE Defined for Kids


adjective sen·si·ble \ˈsen-sə-bəl\

Definition of SENSIBLE for Kids

:  showing or containing good sense or judgment <He was a sensible dog, and knew what to do when he met strangers. — Laura Ingalls Wilder, Little House on the Prairie>
:  designed for a practical purpose rather than for appearance <sensible shoes>
:  capable of feeling or perceiving <The patient was sensible to pain.>
sen·si·bly \-blē\ adverb
Medical Dictionary


adjective sen·si·ble \ˈsen(t)-sə-bəl\

Medical Definition of SENSIBLE

:  perceptible to the senses or to reason or understanding <felt a sensible chill>
:  capable of receiving sensory impressions <sensible to pain>


Next Word in the Dictionary: sensible heatPrevious Word in the Dictionary: sensibilizerAll Words Near: sensible
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears