Capable of being perceived by the senses or the mind: perceptible sounds in the night.
[Late Latin perceptibilis, from Latin perceptus, past participle of percipere, to perceive; see PERCEIVE.]
Synonyms: perceptible, palpable, appreciable, noticeable, discernible
These adjectives apply to what is capable of being apprehended as being real through the senses or by the mind. Perceptible is the least specific: a perceptible pause in the flow of his speech.
Palpable applies both to what is perceptible by means of the sense of touch and to what is readily perceived by the mind: "The advantages Mr. Falkland possessed ... are palpable" (William Godwin).
What is appreciable is capable of being estimated or measured: dumping appreciable amounts of waste into the harbor.
Noticeable means easily observed: noticeable shadows under your eyes.
Discernible means distinguishable, especially by sight or by the intellect: no discernible progress in the contract negotiations.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.