1. incapable of feeling or perceiving; deprived of sensation; unconscious, as a person after a violent blow.
  2. without or not subject to a particular feeling or sensation: insensible to shame; insensible to the cold.
  3. unaware; unconscious; inappreciative: We are not insensible of your kindness.
  4. not perceptible by the senses; imperceptible: insensible transitions.
  5. unresponsive in feeling.
  6. not susceptible of emotion or passion; void of any feeling.
  7. not endowed with feeling or sensation, as matter; inanimate.


  1. lacking sensation or consciousness
  2. (foll by of or to) unaware (of) or indifferent (to)insensible to suffering
  3. thoughtless or callous
  4. a less common word for imperceptible

c.1400, “lacking the power to feel with the senses,” from Latin insensibilis “that cannot be felt,” from in- “not” (see in- (1)) + sensibilis (see sensible). Also sometimes in Middle English “incapable of being felt or perceived by the senses” (early 15c.). Meaning “unconscious” is attested from early 15c. See insensate.


  1. Having lost consciousness, especially temporarily; unconscious.
  2. Lacking physical sensation or the power to react, as to pain or cold; numb.
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