Definitions

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

  • adjective Being of current interest or relevance.
  • adjective Medicine Relating to, applied to, or affecting a localized area of the body, especially of the skin.
  • adjective Of, arranged by, or relating to a particular topic or topics.
  • noun A topical anesthetic.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Of or pertaining to a place or locality; especially, limited to a particular spot; local.
  • Specifically, in medicine, pertaining or applied to a particular part of the body; local.
  • Pertaining to or proceeding from a topic, or category of arguments; hence, merely probable, as an argument.
  • Pertaining to a subject of discourse, composition, or the like; concerned with a particular topic; specifically, dealing with topics of current or local interest.

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

  • adjective Of or pertaining to a place; limited; logical application.
  • adjective (Rhet. & logic) Pertaining to, or consisting of, a topic or topics; according to topics.
  • adjective Resembling a topic, or general maxim; hence, not demonstrative, but merely probable, as an argument.

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

  • adjective Of current interest; contemporary.
  • adjective local to a particular place
  • adjective medicine, not comparable Applied to a localized part of the body.
  • adjective Arranged according to topic or theme; thematic.
  • noun pharmacology A topical anaesthetic.

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

  • adjective of or relating to or arranged by topics
  • adjective of interest at the present time
  • adjective pertaining to the surface of a body part

Etymologies

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

[From Greek topikos, from topos, place.]

Examples

  • You need to associate seemingly different unrelated topics hence the word topical and connect the dots in your mind so that funny words and phrases come rolling off your tongue like sweat off of Martha Stewart’s stockbroker.

    How To Be Funny

  • You need to associate seemingly different unrelated topics hence the word topical and connect the dots in your mind so that funny words and phrases come rolling off your tongue like sweat off of Martha Stewart’s stockbroker.

    How To Be Funny

  • You need to associate seemingly different unrelated topics hence the word topical and connect the dots in your mind so that funny words and phrases come rolling off your tongue like sweat off of Martha Stewart’s stockbroker.

    How To Be Funny

  • You need to associate seemingly different unrelated topics hence the word topical and connect the dots in your mind so that funny words and phrases come rolling off your tongue like sweat off of Martha Stewart’s stockbroker.

    How To Be Funny

  • You need to associate seemingly different unrelated topics hence the word topical and connect the dots in your mind so that funny words and phrases come rolling off your tongue like sweat off of Martha Stewart’s stockbroker.

    How To Be Funny

  • You need to associate seemingly different unrelated topics hence the word topical and connect the dots in your mind so that funny words and phrases come rolling off your tongue like sweat off of Martha Stewart’s stockbroker.

    How To Be Funny

  • Anything topical is now a week old, and I'm out of the loop ... or on the outskirts waving frantically.

    Archive 2009-03-01

  • Veterinarians tend to try and use these drugs sparingly and topical use is less damaging, however, long term topical use can cause unhealthy skin conditions to occur.

    Dr. Richard Palmquist: Does Your Pet Have Allergies?

  • Anything topical is now a week old, and I'm out of the loop ... or on the outskirts waving frantically.

    A Fox in the Henhouse

  • A 2001 study suggested that short-term topical use was free from side effects but provided little relief from menopausal flushing or night sweats.

    Can Supplements Ease Menopause Symptoms?

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