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Definition of "animal" []

  • A multicellular organism of the kingdom Animalia, differing from plants in certain typical characteristics such as capacity for locomotion, nonphotosynthetic metabolism, pronounced response to stimuli, restricted growth, and fixed bodily structure. (noun)
  • An animal organism other than a human, especially a mammal. (noun)
  • A person who behaves in a bestial or brutish manner. (noun)
  • A human considered with respect to his or her physical, as opposed to spiritual, nature. (noun)
  • A person having a specified aptitude or set of interests: "that rarest of musical animals, an instrumentalist who is as comfortable on a podium with a stick as he is playing his instrument” ( Lon Tuck). (noun)

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 "animal" in a sentence
  • "Quality and quantity, then, do not function like genera, for a genus is signified by any predicate that expresses what a subject is (e.g., in the sentence, ˜Man is an animal,™ ˜animal™ is the genus of man), and categories do not function in this way."
  • "An attentive consideration will, however, show the enquirer, that to distinguish man from the remainder of the animal kingdom by his structural characteristics alone, is not so easy a task as would at first sight appear; and he will be obliged at length to return to some such humiliating designation of the _genus animal_, _species homo_, as those above given."
  • "Man, according to the old scholastic definition, is "a rational animal" (_animal rationale_), and his animality is distinct in nature from his rationality, though inseparably joined, during life, in one common personality."