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

  • noun Any of the faculties by which stimuli from outside or inside the body are received and felt, as the faculties of hearing, sight, smell, touch, taste, and equilibrium.
  • noun A perception or feeling produced by a stimulus; sensation.
  • noun The faculties of sensation as means of providing physical gratification and pleasure.
  • noun An intuitive or acquired perception or ability to estimate.
  • noun A capacity to appreciate or understand.
  • noun A vague feeling or presentiment.
  • noun Recognition or perception either through the senses or through the intellect; consciousness.
  • noun Natural understanding or intelligence, especially in practical matters.
  • noun The normal ability to think or reason soundly.
  • noun Something sound or reasonable.
  • noun A meaning that is conveyed, as in speech or writing; signification.
  • noun One of the meanings of a word or phrase.
  • noun Judgment; consensus.
  • noun Intellectual interpretation, as of the significance of an event or the conclusions reached by a group.
  • transitive verb To become aware of; perceive.
  • transitive verb To grasp; understand.
  • transitive verb To detect automatically.
  • adjective Genetics Of or relating to the portion of the strand of double-stranded DNA that serves as a template for and is transcribed into RNA.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • [= Dan. sandse, perceive, = Sw. sansa (refi.), recover oneself; from the noun.]
  • To perceive by the senses.
  • To give the sense of; expound.
  • To perceive; comprehend; understand; realize; take into the mind.
  • noun In geometry, one of two directly opposite ways in which a construct may be generated, described, or thought.
  • noun The simplest type of concrete affective experience; a complex of a sensation (or a well-defined group of sensations) and an affective process: such a feeling as hunger, or drowsiness: opposed to emotion and sentiment.
  • noun Specifically, the sense whose organ is the semicircular canals and vestibule of the internal ear, the portion of the internal ear supplied by the vestibular branch of the acoustic nerve. For the most part, this organ appears to function refiexly, that is, is not an organ of sense; but it undoubtedly gives us the sensation of dizziness or giddiness, and some authors refer this sensation to the ampullæ of the canals, and ascribe to the vestibule a second sensation, that of pressure.
  • Same as incense.
  • noun The capacity of being the subject of sensation and perception; the mode of consciousness by which an object is apprehended which acts upon the mind through the senses; the capacity of becoming conscious of objects as actually now and here; sense-perception; mental activity directly concerned in sensations.
  • noun A special faculty of sensation connected with a bodily organ; the mode of sensation awakened by the excitation of a peripheral nerve.
  • noun Feeling; immediate consciousness; sensation perceived as inward or subjective, or, at least, not decidedly as objective; also, vague consciousness or feeling.
  • noun A power of perceiving relations of a particular kind; a capacity of being affected by certain non-sensuous qualities of objects; a special kind of discernment; also, an exertion of such a power: as, the religious sense; the sense of duty; the sense of humor.
  • noun Mind generally; consciousness; especially, understanding; cognitive power.
  • noun Sound or clear mind.
  • noun Good judgment approaching sagacity; sound practical intelligence.
  • noun Acuteness of perception or apprehension; discernment.
  • noun Discriminative perception; appreciation; a state of mind the result of a mental judgment or valuation.
  • noun Meaning; import; signification; the conception that a word or sign is intended to convey.
  • noun The intention, thought, feeling, or meaning of a body of persons, as an assembly; judgment, opinion, determination, or will in reference to a debated question.
  • noun That which is wise, judicious, sound, sensible, or intelligent, and accords with sound reason: as, to talk sense.

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

  • transitive verb Obs. or Colloq. To perceive by the senses; to recognize.
  • noun (Physiol.) A faculty, possessed by animals, of perceiving external objects by means of impressions made upon certain organs (sensory or sense organs) of the body, or of perceiving changes in the condition of the body. See Muscular sense, under muscular, and Temperature sense, under temperature.
  • noun Perception by the sensory organs of the body; sensation; sensibility; feeling.
  • noun Perception through the intellect; apprehension; recognition; understanding; discernment; appreciation.
  • noun Sound perception and reasoning; correct judgment; good mental capacity; understanding; also, that which is sound, true, or reasonable; rational meaning.
  • noun That which is felt or is held as a sentiment, view, or opinion; judgment; notion; opinion.
  • noun Meaning; import; signification.


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

[Middle English, meaning, from Old French sens, from Latin sēnsus, the faculty of perceiving, from past participle of sentīre, to feel; see sent- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English sense, from Old French sens, sen, san ("sense, reason, direction"); partly from Latin sensus ("sensation, feeling, meaning"), from sentiō ("feel, perceive"); partly of Germanic origin (whence also Occitan sen, Italian senno), from Frankish *sinn ("reason, judgement, mental faculty, way, direction"), from Proto-Germanic *sinnaz (“mind, meaning”). Both Latin and Germanic from Proto-Indo-European *sent- (“to feel”). Compare French assener ("to thrust out"), forcené ("maniac"). More at send.


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