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n. pl. nou·me·na (-nə)
In the philosophy of Kant, an object as it is in itself independent of the mind, as opposed to a phenomenon. Also called thing-in-itself.

[German, from Greek nooumenon, from neuter present passive participle of noein, to perceive by thought, from nous, mind.]

nou′men·al (-mə-nəl) adj.


(ˈnuːmɪnən; ˈnaʊ-)
n, pl -na (-nə)
1. (Philosophy) (in the philosophy of Kant) a thing as it is in itself, not perceived or interpreted, incapable of being known, but only inferred from the nature of experience. Compare phenomenon3 See also thing-in-itself
2. (Philosophy) the object of a purely intellectual intuition
[C18: via German from Greek: thing being thought of, from noein to think, perceive; related to nous mind]
ˈnoumenal adj
ˈnoumenalism n
ˈnoumenalist n, adj
ˌnoumeˈnality n
ˈnoumenally adv


(ˈnu məˌnɒn)

n., pl. -na (-nə).
something that can be the object only of a purely intellectual, nonsensuous intuition.
[1790–1800; < Greek nooúmenon a thing being perceived, n. use of neuter of passive present participle of noeîn to perceive]
nou′me•nal, adj.

noumenon Kantianism.

1. that which can be the object only of a purely intellectual, nonsensuous intuition, the thing-in-itself (Ding an Sich).
2. an unknowable object (as God), the existence of which is not capable of proof. — noumenal, adj.
See also: Philosophy
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.noumenon - the intellectual conception of a thing as it is in itself, not as it is known through perception
cognitive content, mental object, content - the sum or range of what has been perceived, discovered, or learned
References in periodicals archive ?
After an overview of Rosenzweig's rational system, he covers the neglected perspective involving Rosenzweig and Kant; the neglected alternative from noumenality to primordiality; the immediate, non-objective, and non-relative experiencing; the positive anticipation of redemption; and the achievements of renewal and self-examination.
By maintaining her noumenality, the other remains an enigma, and the encounter reveals transcendence and a sort of independence that confronts me powerfully and obliges me to respond.
A thinker's goal thus must be to find a fundamental possibility for integration, and, on this note, Fichte and Novalis part ways: while the idealist sees the ego as freed directly by self-reliance into truth, the poet senses some strong force within his I's empirical vision that turns it towards noumenality, which Manfred Frank calls "an original passivity.