from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Of, relating to, or located within the limits or surface; inner.
  • adjective Residing in or dependent on essential nature; intrinsic.
  • adjective Located, acting, or effective within the body.
  • adjective Of or relating to mental or spiritual nature.
  • adjective Of or relating to the domestic affairs of a nation, group, or business.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Situated or comprised within, or in an inner part or place; inclosed; on the finite side of a bounding surface or line; within the outer boundary of; visceral.
  • Pertaining to the subject itself, and independent, or relatively so, of other things. Thus, the internal affairs of a country are the affairs of its people with one another.
  • Inner; pertaining to the mind, or to the relations of the mind to itself.
  • In anatomy and zoology, in general, inner or interior; not superficial; deep-set; away from the surface or next to the axis of the body or of a part: as, the internal carotid or iliac artery; the internal head of the gastrocnemius.
  • To be taken internally, as a medicine.
  • Applied to a student who has studied in a college of an examining university, as opposed to an external student, or one who has studied in a college not belonging to that institution.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Inward; interior; being within any limit or surface; inclosed; -- opposed to external.
  • adjective Derived from, or dependent on, the thing itself; inherent.
  • adjective Pertaining to its own affairs or interests; especially, (said of a country) domestic, as opposed to foreign
  • adjective Pertaining to the inner being or the heart; spiritual.
  • adjective rare Intrinsic; inherent; real.
  • adjective (Anat.) Lying toward the mesial plane; mesial.
  • adjective (Geom.) an interior angle. See under Interior.
  • adjective (Mach.) a gear in which the teeth project inward from the rim instead of outward.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective inside of something
  • adjective within the body
  • adjective concerned with the domestic affairs of a nation, state or other political community.
  • adjective concerned with the non-public affairs of a company or other organisation

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

  • adjective located inward
  • adjective innermost or essential
  • adjective occurring within an institution or community
  • adjective inside the country
  • adjective happening or arising or located within some limits or especially surface


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

[Middle English internall, from Old French internel, from Medieval Latin internālis, from Latin internus, from inter, within; see en in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Medieval Latin internālis ("of or pertaining to the inner part"), from Latin internus ("internal") + -ālis.


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  • Moreover, it has appeared that different species show a tendency to variability in special directions, and probably in different degrees, and that at any rate Mr. Darwin himself concedes the existence of an internal barrier to change when he credits the goose with "a singularly inflexible organization;" also, that he admits the presence of an _internal_ proclivity to change when he speaks of "a whole organization seeming to have become plastic, and tending to depart from the parental type."

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  • But we took a look at our poll and what we call the internal numbers in our poll, Suzanne.

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  • MCEDWARDS: An Israeli television producer who was involved in the protection of the film says the documentary was originally set to air four or five months ago, but then was canceled because of what he called internal circumstances.

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