• synonyms


[bey-suh l, -zuh l]
See more synonyms for basal on Thesaurus.com
  1. of, at, or forming the base.
  2. forming a basis; fundamental; basic.
  3. Physiology.
    1. indicating a standard low level of activity of an organism, as during total rest.
    2. of an amount required to maintain this level.
  4. Medicine/Medical. serving to induce a preliminary or light anesthesia prior to total anesthetization.
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Origin of basal

First recorded in 1820–30; base1 + -al1
Related formsba·sal·ly, adverbpre·ba·sal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

beginning, easy, elementary, fundamental, initial, lowest, necessary

Examples from the Web for basal

Historical Examples

  • Furthermore, morphology is in reality a basal consideration.

    College Teaching

    Paul Klapper

  • Synthlipsis: the basal constriction of the notocephalon in Notonectids.

  • Terminal: situated at the tip or extremity; opposed to basal.

  • This letter stated with full sincerity Lincoln's basal principle.

    The Negro and the Nation

    George S. Merriam

  • The basal for the rate of interest is the benefit or the advantage of the loan to the borrower.


    Calvin Elliott

British Dictionary definitions for basal


  1. at, of, or constituting a base
  2. of or constituting a foundation or basis; fundamental; essential
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Derived Formsbasally, adverb
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

Word Origin and History for basal


"relating to a base," 1828, from base (n.) + -al (1).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

basal in Medicine


(bāsəl, -zəl)
  1. Of, relating to, located at, or forming a base, usually of an organ or a tooth.
  2. Of, relating to, of situated at the lowest level, as of an organ.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.