[ ki-nee-sis, kahy- ]
/ kɪˈni sɪs, kaɪ- /
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noun Physiology.
the movement of an organism in response to a stimulus, as light.
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Origin of kinesis

1900–05; <Greek kī́nēsis movement, equivalent to kīnē-, verbid stem of kīneîn to move + -sis-sis

Other definitions for kinesis (2 of 2)


a combining form with the general sense “movement, activity,” used in the formation of compound words, often with the particular senses “reaction to a stimulus” (photokinesis), “movement without an apparent physical cause” (telekinesis), “activity within a cell” (karyokinesis).
Compare -kinesia.

Origin of -kinesis

<Greek -kīnēsis;see kinesis
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use kinesis in a sentence

  • What figurations, what formulas, could describe the inexhaustible kinesis of those years?

    The Svengali of Pop Art|Annie Cohen-Solal|May 13, 2010|DAILY BEAST
  • Joyce says something of the sort very differently, he is full of technical scholastic terms: "stasis, kinesis," etc.

    Instigations|Ezra Pound
  • And the old word kinesis will be correctly given as iesis in corresponding modern letters.


British Dictionary definitions for kinesis

/ (kɪˈniːsɪs, kaɪ-) /

biology the nondirectional movement of an organism or cell in response to a stimulus, the rate of movement being dependent on the strength of the stimulus
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

Medical definitions for kinesis

[ kə-nēsĭs, kī- ]

n. pl. ki•ne•ses (-sēz′)
Motion or physical movement, especially movement that is induced by stimulation.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.