from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Relying on or derived from observation or experiment: empirical results that supported the hypothesis.
  • adj. Verifiable or provable by means of observation or experiment: empirical laws.
  • adj. Guided by practical experience and not theory, especially in medicine.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Pertaining to or based on experience.
  • adj. Pertaining to, derived from, or testable by observations made using the physical senses or using instruments which extend the senses.
  • adj. Verifiable by means of scientific experimentation.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Pertaining to or derived from experience or experiments; depending upon or derived from the observation of phenomena.
  • as a general proposition, from a narrow range of observation, without any warrant for its exactitude or for its wider validity.
  • Pertaining to the medical practice of an empiric, in either of the medical senses of that word; hence, charlatanical; quackish.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. relying on medical quackery
  • adj. derived from experiment and observation rather than theory


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From empiric +‎ -al.



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  • Knowledge by revelation is more like empirical than rational knowledge.

    C.S. Lewis, "Bulverism"

    November 23, 2011