sensible:of a kind to be felt or perceived

conspicuous:obvious to the eye or mind

Although dictionaries have definitions, I don't understand how they are different. From my plain logic, they are the same. But I think there is some difference between them since they are two different words. It may be better if I use one instead of another in a sentence, I guess. Please tell me how to use them properly.

  • 2
    Hello, and welcome to the ELL. Your question is too vague. Please edit to explain your doubts. See tour.
    – fev
    Aug 24, 2021 at 8:44
  • Sensible used to mean 'conspicuous' or 'visible' is very archaic, and most modern readers will not know of it. Aug 24, 2021 at 9:25
  • 1
    These days a sensible comment is one that makes sense, though it may not be obvious. A sensible person is one who does not do wild or stupid things.
    – Peter
    Aug 24, 2021 at 9:31
  • What dictionary is this from. I've checked the obvious ones (MW, Oxford, Cambridge) and this isn't in them MW does have "perceptible to the senses or to reason or understanding" Oxford has "ARCHAIC readily perceived" and Cambridge doesn't include this sense at all.
    – James K
    Aug 24, 2021 at 9:52
  • 3: of a kind to be felt or perceived: such as a: perceptible to the senses or to reason or understanding This is an excerpt from MW, and I guess I'm not quite sure what the number(3) and the letter(a) mean.
    – user142281
    Aug 24, 2021 at 10:11

1 Answer 1


Dictionaries use single word glosses to define a rare word, or sense of a word, in terms of a more common one. It often means that this sense of the word is now normally taken by a different word.

A good dictionary will give some usage notes and examples. Oxford has

ARCHAIC readily perceived

The note "Archaic" means "don't use this in new compositions, though you might see it in old books".


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .