follow Dictionary.com

Denotation vs. Connotation

terrestrial

[tuh-res-tree-uh l] /təˈrɛs tri əl/
adjective
1.
pertaining to, consisting of, or representing the earth as distinct from other planets.
2.
of or relating to land as distinct from water.
3.
Botany.
  1. growing on land; not aquatic.
  2. growing in the ground; not epiphytic or aerial.
4.
Zoology. living on or in the ground; not aquatic, arboreal, or aerial.
5.
of or relating to the earth or this world; worldly; mundane.
noun
6.
an inhabitant of the earth, especially a human being.
Origin of terrestrial
late Middle English
1400-1450
1400-50; late Middle English < Latin terrestri(s) pertaining to earth (derivative of terra earth) + -al1
Related forms
terrestrially, adverb
nonterrestrial, adjective, noun
preterrestrial, adjective
superterrestrial, adjective
underterrestrial, adjective
unterrestrial, adjective
Synonyms
1. terrene. See earthly.
Antonyms
1. celestial.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for terrestrial
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The telestial is governed through the ministrations of the terrestrial, by "angels who are appointed to minister for them."

    The House of the Lord James E. Talmage
  • Do you feel, yet, that you belong to this terrestrial scheme again, Mr. Darnay?

    A Tale of Two Cities Charles Dickens
  • The respiratory apparatus in all the terrestrial vertebrates is of the same kind—one single pair of lungs.

    The Origin of Vertebrates Walter Holbrook Gaskell
  • Ambition is surely the most foolish and misjudging of all terrestrial passions.

    Imogen William Godwin
  • The distribution of terrestrial molluscs on the Sandwich Islands presents a great body of facts of this kind.

  • I know of no aerolite that has ever been acceptably traced to terrestrial origin.

    The Book of the Damned Charles Fort
British Dictionary definitions for terrestrial

terrestrial

/təˈrɛstrɪəl/
adjective
1.
of or relating to the earth
2.
of or belonging to the land as opposed to the sea or air
3.
(of animals and plants) living or growing on the land
4.
earthly, worldly, or mundane
5.
(of television signals) sent over the earth's surface from a transmitter on land, rather than by satellite
noun
6.
an inhabitant of the earth
Derived Forms
terrestrially, adverb
terrestrialness, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Latin terrestris, from terra earth
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for terrestrial
adj.

early 15c., from Latin terrestris "earthly," from terra "earth" (see terrain). Originally opposed to celestial; natural history sense of "living on land" is attested from 1630s. The noun meaning "a human being, a mortal" is recorded from 1590s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
terrestrial in Science
terrestrial
  (tə-rěs'trē-əl)   
  1. Relating to Earth or its inhabitants.

  2. Relating to, living on, or growing on land.


The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for terrestrial

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for terrestrial

11
12
Scrabble Words With Friends