Definitions

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

  • adjective Having sense perception; conscious.
  • adjective Experiencing sensation or feeling.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Capable of sensation or of sense-perception; having the power of feeling.
  • Characterized by the exercise of sense or sense-perception.
  • In physiology, noting those parts which on stimulation give rise to sensation.
  • Synonyms Sensitive, etc. See sensible.
  • noun The mind as capable of feeling.

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

  • adjective (Physiol.) Having a faculty, or faculties, of sensation and perception.
  • noun One who has the faculty of perception; a sentient being.

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

  • adjective Conscious or self-aware.
  • adjective Experiencing sensation, thinking, thought, or feeling.
  • adjective Possessing human-like knowledge and intelligence.
  • noun Lifeform with the capability to feel sensation, such as pain.

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

  • adjective endowed with feeling and unstructured consciousness
  • adjective consciously perceiving

Etymologies

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

[Latin sentiēns, sentient-, present participle of sentīre, to feel; see sent- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin sentīens ("feeling, perceiving"), present active participle of sentiō.

Examples

  • On Kierkegaard's religious views, Sartre offers the usual argument against existence of God: If existence precedes essence, it follows from the meaning of the term sentient that a sentient being cannot be complete or perfect.

    Citizendium, the Citizens' Compendium - Recent changes [en]

  • Of course it is circular in the sense that, based on my proffered definition, since intelligence ultimately permeates all aspects of being, what we call sentient beings (life forms) are simply different manifestations of intelligence playing with itself, or as one old text puts it in the title: 'You are the Eyes of the Universe.'

    Telic Thoughts

  • Being aware that Bush and his bunch are barely sentient is not being against America, it is being for what is used to stand for.

    Page 3

  • Being aware that Bush and his bunch are barely sentient is not being against America, it is being for what is used to stand for.

    Page 3

  • Being aware that Bush and his bunch are barely sentient is not being against America, it is being for what is used to stand for.

    Page 3

  • But I am curious to know, Ron, how long human heads remain sentient after they have been severed.

    Think Progress » Rove Returns: CIA Leaker Now Leading Campaign to Blame Local Officials for Katrina Aftermath

  • Being aware that Bush and his bunch are barely sentient is not being against America, it is being for what is used to stand for.

    Page 3

  • Being aware that Bush and his bunch are barely sentient is not being against America, it is being for what is used to stand for.

    Page 3

  • Being aware that Bush and his bunch are barely sentient is not being against America, it is being for what is used to stand for.

    Page 3

  • I call sentient beings out of the blessed gulf of nothingness, that they may pay a duty to my weakness by and by, and curse me in their hearts?

    A Pessimist In Theory and Practice

Comments

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  • "'I count this as the day Wordie became sentient,' Mr. McGrath says. 'I love seeing people bend a system to their own purposes.'"

    - me, in the frickin' Wall Street Journal Online. Ha!

    December 27, 2006

  • I am sentient, but a rock is not.

    November 13, 2007