Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Wikipedia.


 (sĕn′shəns, -shē-əns, -tē-əns)
1. The quality or state of being sentient; consciousness.
2. Feeling as distinguished from perception or thought.


(ˈsɛnʃəns) or


1. the state or quality of being sentient; awareness
2. sense perception not involving intelligence or mental perception; feeling


(ˈsɛn ʃəns)

also sen′tien•cy,

sentient condition or character; capacity for sensation or feeling.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.sentience - state of elementary or undifferentiated consciousness; "the crash intruded on his awareness"
consciousness - an alert cognitive state in which you are aware of yourself and your situation; "he lost consciousness"
2.sentience - the faculty through which the external world is apprehended; "in the dark he had to depend on touch and on his senses of smell and hearing"
faculty, mental faculty, module - one of the inherent cognitive or perceptual powers of the mind
sense modality, sensory system, modality - a particular sense
sensitivity, sensitiveness, sensibility - (physiology) responsiveness to external stimuli; the faculty of sensation; "sensitivity to pain"
3.sentience - the readiness to perceive sensations; elementary or undifferentiated consciousness; "gave sentience to slugs and newts"- Richard Eberhart
animateness, liveness, aliveness - the property of being animated; having animal life as distinguished from plant life
insentience - lacking consciousness or ability to perceive sensations


nEmpfindungsvermögen nt; the sentience of approaching deathdas Vorgefühl des nahenden Todes
References in classic literature ?
This opinion, in its general form, was that of the sentience of all vegetable things.
Not a thing seemed to be stirring, but all to be grim and fixed as death or fate, so that a thin streak of white mist, that crept with almost imperceptible slowness across the grass towards the house, seemed to have a sentience and a vitality of its own.
Each day he tried the lifting of greater weight, and it seemed almost as if the machine had a sentience of its own, which was increasing with the obstacles placed before it.
A "mosquito" is an interactive mechanical construction oddly suggesting sentience in spite of its highlighted artificiality.
Certainly, the treatment of chimpanzees at Yerkes would indicate that knowledge of the sentience of these animals has done little or nothing to protect them.
He'll not necessarily get to the stage where he'll be able to tell much of a story, but in some cases they stabilise to a state where there's good evidence of sentience.
The violences inflicted on the sentience of language by abstract thought, and on sincerity by rhetoric, can cause a poet physical pain.
Whole Foods Market further looked into the biology and sentience in lobsters, including studying the final report of the November 2005 European Food Safety Authority Animal Health and Welfare panel which concluded all decapod crustaceans, including lobsters and crabs, are complex in behavior and appear to have some degree of awareness, feeling pain and having the ability to learn.
Give them a tune and the little fellows would gyrate away in at least a semblance of time and provide the illusion of a greater degree of sentience than you would ordinarily expect of a plastic sunflower.
It is a given that over time, location sentience will be fully exploited by a wide range of business and consumer-centric mobile data applications," said Cliff Raskind, director, global wireless practice for Strategy Analytics, Inc.
Skip's Animal Company is dedicated to creating original musical works inspired by the relationships between animals and people -- and to raising the awareness of people as to the sentience of all animals.
PERSONISM: Persons, according to Singer, are beings with certain capacities: sentience, consciousness, rationality, autonomy, etc.