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Definition of "synthetic" [syn•thet•ic]

  • Relating to, involving, or of the nature of synthesis. (adjective)
  • Chemistry Produced by synthesis, especially not of natural origin. (adjective)
  • Not natural or genuine; artificial or contrived: "counterfeit rhetoric that flourishes when passions are synthetic” ( George F. Will). (adjective)
  • Prepared or made artificially: synthetic leather. See Synonyms at artificial. (adjective)
  • Linguistics Relating to or being a language, such as Latin or Russian, that uses inflectional affixes to express syntactic relationships. (adjective)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "synthetic" in a sentence
  • "It was on his recovery from his first grave attack that he shaped the plan which henceforth held him, of organising the modern sciences and incorporating them into what he called a synthetic philosophy."
  • "But inactivating both of those enzymes caused what the researchers term synthetic lethality: two inactivations that separately were nonlethal but together cause bacterial death."
  • "Work in synthetic organic chemistry was also recognized in 1979 with the prize to Herbert C."