Word of the Day: Visceral


Visceral [vis·cer·al] adj. 1. Instinctual: proceeding from instinct rather than from reasoned thinking or intellect. “A visceral business decision.” 2. Emotional: characterized by or showing crude or elemental emotions.


adjective \ˈvi-sə-rəl, ˈvis-rəl\

: coming from strong emotions and not from logic or reason

medical : of or relating to the viscera

Full Definition of VISCERAL

1:  felt in or as if in the internal organs of the body :  deep <a visceral conviction>
2:  not intellectual :  instinctive, unreasoning <visceral drives>
3:  dealing with crude or elemental emotions :  earthy <a visceral novel>
4:  of, relating to, or located on or among the viscera :  splanchnic <visceral organs>
vis·cer·al·ly adverb

Examples of VISCERAL

  1. Her visceral reaction was to curse at the other driver.
  2. In 1972 he began an address at a Chamber of Commerce luncheon, Let me start off by saying this is not quite an honor, my being here. I haven’t had too much regard for the Chamber of Commerce in my years in Boston. When the Celtics won 11 championships in 13 years, it was ignored in their own town. Arnold Jacob Auerbach, though paradoxical and highly idiosyncratic, was foremost a direct and visceral man. —Frank Deford, Sports Illustrated, 6 Nov. 2006
  3. When you measure your waist circumference, you’re indirectly measuring your visceral fat. —David Schardt, Nutrition Action, July/August 2006
  4. But there are strong taboos I haven’t anticipated. The most striking is the visceral dislike of rawness. In China, the consumption of raw foods was historically viewed as a barbarian habit, and most everything is still eaten cooked. —Fuchsia Dunlop, Gourmet, August 2005
  5. One of the wonders of cooking is that the tiniest adjustment to what you are making, the addition of a single ingredient or the execution of a technique, can entirely change a dish and the visceral response you get from eating it. —Amanda Hesser, New York Times, 17 July 2002

First Known Use of VISCERAL



adjective \ˈvis-ə-rəl\   (Medical Dictionary)

Medical Definition of VISCERAL

: of, relating to, or located on or among the viscera <visceral organs>—compare parietal 1
vis·cer·al·ly adverb
Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary copyright © 2014 by Merriam-Webster, Incorporated

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