Definitions for essentialəˈsɛn ʃəl

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word essential

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

es•sen•tial*əˈsɛn ʃəl(adj.)

  1. absolutely necessary; indispensable.

  2. pertaining to or constituting the essence of a thing.

  3. noting or containing an essence of a plant, drug, etc.

  4. being such by its very nature or in the highest sense; natural; spontaneous:

    essential happiness.

  5. not associated with an underlying disease:

    essential hypertension.

    Category: Pathology

  6. (n.)a basic, indispensable, or necessary element; chief point.

* Syn: essential , inherent , intrinsic refer to that which is in the natural composition of a thing. essential suggests that which is in the very essence or constitution of a thing: Quiet is essential in a public library.inherent means inborn or fixed from the beginning as a permanent quality or constituent of a thing: properties inherent in iron.intrinsic implies belonging to the nature of a thing itself and comprised within it, without regard to external considerations or accidentally added properties: the intrinsic value of diamonds. See also necessary.

Origin of essential:

1300–50; ME essencial < ML essenciālis, for LL essentiālis


Princeton's WordNet

  1. necessity, essential, requirement, requisite, necessary(adj)

    anything indispensable

    "food and shelter are necessities of life"; "the essentials of the good life"; "allow farmers to buy their requirements under favorable conditions"; "a place where the requisites of water fuel and fodder can be obtained"

  2. essential, indispensable(adj)

    absolutely necessary; vitally necessary

    "essential tools and materials"; "funds essential to the completion of the project"; "an indispensable worker"

  3. essential(adj)

    basic and fundamental

    "the essential feature"

  4. all-important(a), all important(p), crucial, essential, of the essence(p)(adj)

    of the greatest importance

    "the all-important subject of disarmament"; "crucial information"; "in chess cool nerves are of the essence"

  5. essential(adj)

    being or relating to or containing the essence of a plant etc

    "essential oil"

  6. substantive, essential(adj)

    defining rights and duties as opposed to giving the rules by which rights and duties are established

    "substantive law"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. essential(adjective)əˈsɛn ʃəl

    necessary, or very important; = vital

    the essential items you need for a week of camping; Water is essential to life.; It is essential that everyone stays calm.; It is essential to add the ingredients in this order.

  2. essentialəˈsɛn ʃəl

    most basic and central; = basic, fundamental

    The essential problem is a lack of good nutrition.


  1. essential(Noun)

    A necessary ingredient.

  2. essential(Noun)

    A fundamental ingredient.

  3. essential(Adjective)


  4. essential(Adjective)


  5. essential(Adjective)

    Very important; of high importance.

  6. essential(Adjective)

    Being in the basic form; showing its essence.

    Donu2019t mind him being grumpy. Thatu2019s the essential Fred.

  7. essential(Adjective)

    Such that each complementary region is irreducible, the boundary of each complementary region is incompressible by disks and monogons in the complementary region, and no leaf is a sphere or a torus bounding a solid torus in the manifold.

  8. Origin: From essentialis, from essentia.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Essential(adj)

    belonging to the essence, or that which makes an object, or class of objects, what it is

  2. Essential(adj)

    hence, really existing; existent

  3. Essential(adj)

    important in the highest degree; indispensable to the attainment of an object; indispensably necessary

  4. Essential(adj)

    containing the essence or characteristic portion of a substance, as of a plant; highly rectified; pure; hence, unmixed; as, an essential oil

  5. Essential(adj)

    necessary; indispensable; -- said of those tones which constitute a chord, in distinction from ornamental or passing tones

  6. Essential(adj)

    idiopathic; independent of other diseases


  1. Essential

    Essential is a 1991 collection of hits by The Divinyls.

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'essential' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #1147

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'essential' in Written Corpus Frequency: #2350

  3. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'essential' in Adjectives Frequency: #142

Translations for essential

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


absolutely necessary

Strong boots are essential for mountaineering; It is essential that you arrive punctually.

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