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1. The apprehension of an object, thought, or emotion through the senses or mind: a child's first experience of snow.
a. Active participation in events or activities, leading to the accumulation of knowledge or skill: a lesson taught by experience; a carpenter with experience in roof repair.
b. The knowledge or skill so derived.
a. An event or a series of events participated in or lived through.
b. The totality of such events in the past of an individual or group.
tr.v. ex·per·i·enced, ex·per·i·enc·ing, ex·per·i·enc·es
To participate in personally; undergo: experience a great adventure; experienced loneliness.

[Middle English, from Old French, from Latin experientia, from experiēns, experient-, present participle of experīrī, to try; see per- in Indo-European roots.]

ex·pe′ri·enc·er n.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. direct personal participation or observation; actual knowledge or contact: experience of prison life.
2. a particular incident, feeling, etc, that a person has undergone: an experience to remember.
3. accumulated knowledge, esp of practical matters: a man of experience.
a. the totality of characteristics, both past and present, that make up the particular quality of a person, place, or people
b. the impact made on an individual by the culture of a people, nation, etc: the American experience.
5. (Philosophy) philosophy
a. the content of a perception regarded as independent of whether the apparent object actually exists. Compare sense datum
b. the faculty by which a person acquires knowledge of contingent facts about the world, as contrasted with reason
c. the totality of a person's perceptions, feelings, and memories
vb (tr)
6. to participate in or undergo
7. to be emotionally or aesthetically moved by; feel: to experience beauty.
[C14: from Latin experientia, from experīrī to prove; related to Latin perīculum peril]
exˈperienceable adj
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ɪkˈspɪər i əns)

n., v. -enced, -enc•ing. n.
1. something personally lived through or encountered: a frightening experience.
2. the observing, encountering, or undergoing of things generally as they occur in the course of time: to learn from experience.
3. knowledge or practical wisdom gained from what one has observed, encountered, or undergone: a person of experience.
4. to have experience of; feel: to experience pleasure.
[1350–1400; Middle English < Latin experientia, derivative of experient-, s. of experiēns, past participle of experīrī to try, test; compare peril]
ex•pe′ri•ence•a•ble, adj.

Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


, experiment, expert - Experience, experiment and expert derive from Latin experiri, "try."
See also related terms for try.
Farlex Trivia Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.




  1. Experience is … a kind of huge spider-web of the finest silken threads suspended in the chamber of consciousness, and catching every air-borne particle in its tissue —Henry James
  2. Experience is like medicine; some persons require larger doses of it than others, and do not like to take it pure, but a little disguised and better adapted to taste —Lord Acton
  3. Experience, like a pale musician, holds a dulcimer of patience in his hand —Elizabeth Barrett Browning
  4. Experience seems to be like the shining of a bright lantern. It suddenly makes clear in the mind what was already there, perhaps, but dim —Walter De La Mare
  5. A new element in her experience; like a chapter in a book —Henry Van Dyke
  6. The solitary and unshared experience dies of itself like the violations of love —Archibald MacLeish
  7. To most men, experience is like the stern light of a ship, which illumines only the track it has passed —Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Similes Dictionary, 1st Edition. © 1988 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. 'experience'

If you have experience of something, you have seen it, done it, or felt it.

Do you have any teaching experience?
I've had no experience of running a business.

An experience is something that happens to you or something that you do.

Moving house can be a stressful experience.

You say that someone has an experience.

I had a strange experience last night.

Be Careful!
Don't say that someone 'makes an experience'.

2. 'experiment'

Don't use 'experience' to refer to a scientific test that is carried out in order to discover or prove something. Use experiment.

Laboratory experiments show that Vitamin D may slow cancer growth.
Try it out in an experiment.

You usually say that someone does, conducts, or carries out an experiment.

We decided to do an experiment.
Several experiments were conducted at the University of Zurich.

Be Careful!
Don't say that someone 'makes an experiment'.

Collins COBUILD English Usage © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 2004, 2011, 2012


Past participle: experienced
Gerund: experiencing

I experience
you experience
he/she/it experiences
we experience
you experience
they experience
I experienced
you experienced
he/she/it experienced
we experienced
you experienced
they experienced
Present Continuous
I am experiencing
you are experiencing
he/she/it is experiencing
we are experiencing
you are experiencing
they are experiencing
Present Perfect
I have experienced
you have experienced
he/she/it has experienced
we have experienced
you have experienced
they have experienced
Past Continuous
I was experiencing
you were experiencing
he/she/it was experiencing
we were experiencing
you were experiencing
they were experiencing
Past Perfect
I had experienced
you had experienced
he/she/it had experienced
we had experienced
you had experienced
they had experienced
I will experience
you will experience
he/she/it will experience
we will experience
you will experience
they will experience
Future Perfect
I will have experienced
you will have experienced
he/she/it will have experienced
we will have experienced
you will have experienced
they will have experienced
Future Continuous
I will be experiencing
you will be experiencing
he/she/it will be experiencing
we will be experiencing
you will be experiencing
they will be experiencing
Present Perfect Continuous
I have been experiencing
you have been experiencing
he/she/it has been experiencing
we have been experiencing
you have been experiencing
they have been experiencing
Future Perfect Continuous
I will have been experiencing
you will have been experiencing
he/she/it will have been experiencing
we will have been experiencing
you will have been experiencing
they will have been experiencing
Past Perfect Continuous
I had been experiencing
you had been experiencing
he/she/it had been experiencing
we had been experiencing
you had been experiencing
they had been experiencing
I would experience
you would experience
he/she/it would experience
we would experience
you would experience
they would experience
Past Conditional
I would have experienced
you would have experienced
he/she/it would have experienced
we would have experienced
you would have experienced
they would have experienced
Collins English Verb Tables © HarperCollins Publishers 2011
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.experience - the accumulation of knowledge or skill that results from direct participation in events or activitiesexperience - the accumulation of knowledge or skill that results from direct participation in events or activities; "a man of experience"; "experience is the best teacher"
familiarisation, familiarization - the experience of becoming familiar with something
woodcraft - skill and experience in matters relating to the woods (as hunting or fishing or camping)
education - knowledge acquired by learning and instruction; "it was clear that he had a very broad education"
inexperience, rawness - lack of experience and the knowledge and understanding derived from experience; "procedural inexperience created difficulties"; "their poor behavior was due to the rawness of the troops"
2.experience - the content of direct observation or participation in an event; "he had a religious experience"; "he recalled the experience vividly"
cognitive content, mental object, content - the sum or range of what has been perceived, discovered, or learned
reality, world - all of your experiences that determine how things appear to you; "his world was shattered"; "we live in different worlds"; "for them demons were as much a part of reality as trees were"
living, life - the experience of being alive; the course of human events and activities; "he could no longer cope with the complexities of life"
re-experiencing, reliving - a recurrence of a prior experience; "the reliving of a strong emotion can be therapeutic"
reminder - an experience that causes you to remember something
3.experience - an event as apprehended; "a surprising experience"; "that painful experience certainly got our attention"
high point - the most enjoyable part of a given experience; "the trumpet solo was the high point of the concert"
happening, natural event, occurrence, occurrent - an event that happens
appalling - an experience that appalls; "is it better to view the appalling or merely hear of it?"
augury, foretoken, preindication, sign - an event that is experienced as indicating important things to come; "he hoped it was an augury"; "it was a sign from God"
flashing, flash - a short vivid experience; "a flash of emotion swept over him"; "the flashings of pain were a warning"
good time, blast - a highly pleasurable or exciting experience; "we had a good time at the party"; "celebrating after the game was a blast"
loss - the experience of losing a loved one; "he sympathized on the loss of their grandfather"
near-death experience - the experience of being close to death but surviving
ordeal - a severe or trying experience
out-of-body experience - the dissociative experience of observing yourself from an external perspective as though your mind or soul had left and was observing your body
taste - a brief experience of something; "he got a taste of life on the wild side"; "she enjoyed her brief taste of independence"
time - a person's experience on a particular occasion; "he had a time holding back the tears"; "they had a good time together"
head trip, trip - an exciting or stimulating experience
vision - a religious or mystical experience of a supernatural appearance; "he had a vision of the Virgin Mary"
Verb1.experience - go or live throughexperience - go or live through; "We had many trials to go through"; "he saw action in Viet Nam"
experience, know, live - have firsthand knowledge of states, situations, emotions, or sensations; "I know the feeling!"; "have you ever known hunger?"; "I have lived a kind of hell when I was a drug addict"; "The holocaust survivors have lived a nightmare"; "I lived through two divorces"
undergo - pass through; "The chemical undergoes a sudden change"; "The fluid undergoes shear"; "undergo a strange sensation"
suffer, endure - undergo or be subjected to; "He suffered the penalty"; "Many saints suffered martyrdom"
suffer, meet - undergo or suffer; "meet a violent death"; "suffer a terrible fate"
feel - undergo passive experience of:"We felt the effects of inflation"; "her fingers felt their way through the string quartet"; "she felt his contempt of her"
enjoy - have for one's benefit; "The industry enjoyed a boom"
witness, see, find - perceive or be contemporaneous with; "We found Republicans winning the offices"; "You'll see a lot of cheating in this school"; "The 1960's saw the rebellion of the younger generation against established traditions"; "I want to see results"
come - experience orgasm; "she could not come because she was too upset"
2.experience - have firsthand knowledge of states, situations, emotions, or sensations; "I know the feeling!"; "have you ever known hunger?"; "I have lived a kind of hell when I was a drug addict"; "The holocaust survivors have lived a nightmare"; "I lived through two divorces"
taste - experience briefly; "The ex-slave tasted freedom shortly before she died"
live over, relive - experience again, often in the imagination; "He relived the horrors of war"
experience, go through, see - go or live through; "We had many trials to go through"; "he saw action in Viet Nam"
3.experience - go through (mental or physical states or experiences); "get an idea"; "experience vertigo"; "get nauseous"; "receive injuries"; "have a feeling"
suffer, sustain, have, get - undergo (as of injuries and illnesses); "She suffered a fracture in the accident"; "He had an insulin shock after eating three candy bars"; "She got a bruise on her leg"; "He got his arm broken in the scuffle"
undergo - pass through; "The chemical undergoes a sudden change"; "The fluid undergoes shear"; "undergo a strange sensation"
take - experience or feel or submit to; "Take a test"; "Take the plunge"
horripilate - have one's hair stand on end and get goosebumps; "I horripilate when I see violence on television"
4.experience - undergo an emotional sensation or be in a particular state of mind; "She felt resentful"; "He felt regret"
incline - feel favorably disposed or willing; "She inclines to the view that people should be allowed to expres their religious beliefs"
recapture - experience anew; "She could not recapture that feeling of happiness"
pride, plume, congratulate - be proud of; "He prides himself on making it into law school"
smoulder, smolder - have strong suppressed feelings
harbor, nurse, entertain, harbour, hold - maintain (a theory, thoughts, or feelings); "bear a grudge"; "entertain interesting notions"; "harbor a resentment"
cool off - feel less enamoured of something or somebody
see red, anger - become angry; "He angers easily"
chafe - feel extreme irritation or anger; "He was chafing at her suggestion that he stay at home while she went on a vacation"
suffer - experience (emotional) pain; "Every time her husband gets drunk, she suffers"
fume - be mad, angry, or furious
regret, rue, repent - feel remorse for; feel sorry for; be contrite about
sadden - come to feel sad
joy, rejoice - feel happiness or joy
sympathise, sympathize - share the feelings of; understand the sentiments of
pride oneself, take pride - feel proud of; "She took great pride in her sons"
burn - feel strong emotion, especially anger or passion; "She was burning with anger"; "He was burning to try out his new skies"
die - feel indifferent towards; "She died to worldly things and eventually entered a monastery"
fly high - be elated; "He was flying high during the summer months"
glow, radiate, beam, shine - experience a feeling of well-being or happiness, as from good health or an intense emotion; "She was beaming with joy"; "Her face radiated with happiness"
glow - be exuberant or high-spirited; "Make the people's hearts glow"
5.experience - undergo; "The stocks had a fast run-up"
change - undergo a change; become different in essence; losing one's or its original nature; "She changed completely as she grew older"; "The weather changed last night"
encounter, receive, meet - experience as a reaction; "My proposal met with much opposition"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


2. event, affair, incident, happening, test, trial, encounter, episode, adventure, ordeal, occurrence It was an experience I would not like to go through again.
1. undergo, have, know, feel, try, meet, face, suffer, taste, go through, observe, sample, encounter, sustain, perceive, endure, participate in, run into, live through, behold, come up against, apprehend, become familiar with couples who have experienced the trauma of divorce
"Trust one who has gone through it" [Virgil Aeneid]
"Experience is not what happens to a man. It is what a man does with what happens to him" [Aldous Huxley Texts and Pretexts]
"Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes" [Oscar Wilde Lady Windermere's Fan]
"All experience is an arch to build upon" [Henry Brooks Adams The Education of Henry Adams]
"Experience is the mother of wisdom"
"Experience is the best teacher"
"Nothing ever becomes real till it is experienced"
"-Even a Proverb is no proverb to you till your Life has illustrated it" [John Keats letter to George and Georgiana Keats]
Collins Thesaurus of the English Language – Complete and Unabridged 2nd Edition. 2002 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995, 2002


Personal knowledge derived from participation or observation:
1. To participate in or partake of personally:
Archaic: prove.
2. To be physically aware of through the senses:
3. To undergo an emotional reaction:
The American Heritage® Roget's Thesaurus. Copyright © 2013, 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
تَجْرِبَهتَجْرِبَه، حَدَثخِبْرَةيُجَرِّب
reyna, upplifareynsla
kinh nghiệm


A. N
1. (= knowledge) → experiencia f
to learn by experienceaprender por la experiencia
I know from bitter/personal experiencelo sé por mi amarga experiencia/por experiencia propia
he has no experience of grief/being out of workno conoce la tristeza/el desempleo
2. (= skill, practice) → práctica f, experiencia f
he has plenty of experiencetiene mucha práctica
have you any previous experience?¿tiene usted experiencia previa?
practical experienceexperiencia f práctica
teaching experienceexperiencia f docente
a driver with ten years' experienceun conductor con diez años de experiencia
see also work D
3. (= event) → experiencia f, aventura f
to have a pleasant/frightening experiencetener una experiencia agradable/aterradora
it was quite an experiencefue toda una experiencia
B. VT (= feel) [+ emotion, sensation] → experimentar; (= suffer) [+ defeat, loss, hardship] → sufrir; [+ difficulty] → tener, tropezar con
he experiences some difficulty/pain in walkingtiene dificultades/dolor al andar
he experienced a loss of hearing after the accidentdespués del accidente, sufrió una pérdida del oído
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005


(in work)expérience f; (in life)expérience f
experience in sth [+ work] → expérience dans qch
to know by experience → savoir par expérience
to learn from experience → apprendre par expérience
(= event) → expérience f
to have an interesting experience → vivre une expérience intéressante
(= have) [+ problem] → connaître; [+ bleeding, nausea] → souffrir de
(= feel) [+ distress, frustration] → ressentir
see also experienced
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


(= knowledge, wisdom acquired)Erfahrung f; experience of lifeLebenserfahrung f; experience shows or proves that …die Erfahrung lehrt, dass …; to know something from experienceetw aus Erfahrung wissen; to learn/speak from experienceaus eigener Erfahrung lernen/sprechen; from my own personal experienceaus eigener Erfahrung; he has no experience of griefer hat nie Kummer erfahren or erlebt; he has no experience of living in the countryer kennt das Landleben nicht; I gained a lot of useful experienceich habe viele nützliche Erfahrungen gemacht; to have an experienceeine Erfahrung machen
(= practice, skill)Erfahrung f; he has had no practical experienceihm fehlt die Praxis, er hat keine praktischen Kenntnisse or keine praktische Erfahrung; to have experience of a techniqueErfahrung in einer Methode haben; have you had any experience of driving a bus?haben Sie Erfahrung im Busfahren?; experience in a job/in businessBerufs-/Geschäftserfahrung f; to have a lot of teaching experiencegroße Erfahrung als Lehrer(in) haben; he lacks experienceihm fehlt die Praxis or praktische Erfahrung; he is working in a factory to gain experienceer arbeitet in einer Fabrik, um praktische Erfahrungen zu sammeln
(= event experienced)Erlebnis nt; I had a nasty experiencemir ist etwas Unangenehmes passiert; the trial was a very nasty experienceder Prozess war eine sehr unangenehme Sache; it was a painful experiencees war schmerzlich (geh); to suffer some terrible experiencesviel durchmachen; what an experience!das war vielleicht was!; it was a new experience for mees war völlig neu für mich
(= suffer, undergo) pain, grief, hungererfahren, erleben; difficult times, recessiondurchmachen; problems, symptomshaben; to experience difficultiesauf Schwierigkeiten stoßen, Schwierigkeiten haben
(= feel)fühlen, spüren, empfinden
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007


1. n (all senses) → esperienza
to learn by experience → imparare per esperienza
I know from bitter experience → ho imparato a mie spese
he has no experience of grief/being out of work → non sa che cosa voglia dire il dolore/restare senza lavoro
she has plenty of experience → ha moltissima esperienza
have you any previous experience? → ha esperienza in questo campo?
practical/teaching experience → esperienza pratica/d'insegnamento
to have a pleasant/frightening experience → avere un'esperienza piacevole/terrificante
it was quite an experience (also) (iro) → è stata una bella esperienza
2. vt (feel, emotions, sensations, pleasure) → provare; (suffer, defeat, losses, hardship) → subire
she experiences some difficulty in walking → ha qualche difficoltà a camminare
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995


(ikˈspiəriəns) noun
1. (knowledge, skill or wisdom gained through) practice in some activity, or the doing of something. Learn by experience – don't make the same mistake again; Has she had experience in teaching?
2. an event that affects or involves a person etc. The earthquake was a terrible experience.
to have experience of; to feel. I have never before experienced such rudeness!
exˈperienced adjective
having gained knowledge from experience; skilled. an experienced mountaineer.
Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary © 2006-2013 K Dictionaries Ltd.


خِبْرَة zkušenosti erfaring Erfahrung εμπειρία experiencia kokemus expérience iskustvo esperienza 経験 경험 ervaring erfaring doświadczenie experiência опыт upplevelse ประสบการณ์ deneyim kinh nghiệm 经验
Multilingual Translator © HarperCollins Publishers 2009


n. experiencia, práctica;
he has a lot of ___ as a surgeonél tiene mucha ___ como cirujano.
English-Spanish Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012


n experiencia; vt (to feel) sentir, experimentar
English-Spanish/Spanish-English Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
He did not know how great a sense of change she was experiencing; she, who at home had sometimes wanted some favorite dish, or sweets, without the possibility of getting either, now could order what she liked, buy pounds of sweets, spend as much money as she liked, and order any puddings she pleased.
Also, you say that you are in despair at the thought of being unable to help me in my illness, owing to the fact that you have sold everything which might have maintained me, and preserved me in sickness, as well as that you have borrowed as much as it is possible for you to borrow, and are daily experiencing unpleasantness with your landlady.
"Senior communicators who have spent their entire careers on the corporate side are experiencing increasing difficulty in securing appropriate positions," he says.
The deaf-blind individuals who participate in the national center's Work Experience Program may be experiencing what it is like to make choices, especially vocational choices, for the first time.
The conversion, from a partner in an accounting firm to the manager of a small manufacturing business, was not as easy as he had imagined when he decided to plunk a sizable portion of his retirement nest egg into a business that was experiencing financial difficulty.
Nola comes to sense memory as her own through experiencing the tactile, the body (and not just the idea) of self.
What were students experiencing as they made the transition from school
Despite the potential for experiencing growth as a researcher and member of a larger community, working within the service learning framework while completing a master's thesis may not be the best option for everyone.
In order to receive the most accurate diagnosis, you must honestly and completely inform the doctor of all symptoms that you are experiencing. Likewise, in order for the consultant to make valid recommendations, he or she must completely understand the unique nature of your campus environment.
Experiencing war for the first time during adolescence has a significant impact on how adolescents' adult schemes of war are formed.
Feelings of helplessness, fearfulness, anxiousness, depression, loss, nervousness, unhappiness, emptiness, discouragement, and disturbance are several main types of emotional responses that students stated they experienced at the moment of experiencing uncertainty.
While they may have considerable experience in the Navy technical shore establishment, they are probably experiencing Navy life at sea for the very first time.

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