external meaning

[ eks'tə:nl ] Pronunciation:   "external" in a sentence
  • Adjective: external  ik'sturn(u)l
    1. Happening or arising or located outside or beyond some limits or especially surface
      "the external auditory canal"; "external pressures" 
    2. Coming from the outside
      - extraneous, outside 
    3. From or between other countries
      "external commerce"
      - international, outside 
    4. Purely outward or superficial
      "external composure"; "an external concern for reputation"
    Noun: external  ik'sturn(u)l
    1. Outward features
      "he enjoyed the solemn externals of religion"

    Derived forms: externals

    See also: externality, externally, extrinsic, foreign, outer, outside, outward, position, spatial relation

    Type of: characteristic, feature

    Antonym: internal

    Encyclopedia: External

  • [Business]
    AmE / adjective


    coming from outside an organization:

    An external auditor will verify the accounts.

    The company has interviewed both internal and external candidates for the job.

    We are seeking external advice on the matter.


    used to describe the situation when a company increases in size by buying or joining with other companies:

    They expect to use about €3.5 billion for external growth over a three-year period.

    External growth is a much faster form of growth than internal growth.



    connected with foreign countries:

    an increase in external trade

    Japan's economy has been supported largely by external demand.

    Given the unstable external environment, the prospects for growth are uncertain.

    4 (IT )

    that is not built into the main computer or device but must be connected to it:

    an external modem/disk drive


  • [Medicine]
    1 : capable of being perceived outwardly : BODILY ‹external signs of a disease›
    a : situated at, on, or near the outside ‹an external protective covering› ‹an external muscle›
    b : directed toward the outside : having an outside object ‹external perception› ‹eyesight and the other external senses›
    c : used by applying to the outside ‹an external lotion›
    a (1) : situated near or toward the surface of the body; also : situated away from the mesial plane ‹the external condyle of the humerus› (2) : arising or acting from outside : having an outside origin ‹external causes› ‹external stimuli›
    b : of, relating to, or consisting of something outside the mind : having existence independent of the mind ‹sensations aroused by external phenomena› ‹external reality› — ex·ter·nal·ly adv


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  1. in addition, external energy appears as heat.
  2. drop warm ear drops in external canal.
  3. insects need an external source of sterols.
  4. because of its bulk, the crystal is external.
  5. being rich is a very external quality.

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PC Version