[ adjective, noun ree-fleks; verb ri-fleks ]
/ adjective, noun ˈri flɛks; verb rɪˈflɛks /
Physiology. noting or pertaining to an involuntary response to a stimulus, the nerve impulse from a receptor being transmitted inward to a nerve center that in turn transmits it outward to an effector.
occurring in reaction; responsive.
cast back; reflected, as light, color, etc.
bent or turned back.
designating a radio apparatus in which the same circuit or part performs two functions.
- Also called reflex act. movement caused by a reflex response.
- Also called reflex action. the entire physiological process activating such movement.
any automatic, unthinking, often habitual behavior or response.
the reflection or image of an object, as exhibited by a mirror or the like.
a reproduction, as if in a mirror.
a copy; adaptation.
reflected light, color, etc.
Historical Linguistics. an element in a language, as a sound, that has developed from a corresponding element in an earlier form of the language: The (ō) in “stone” is a reflex of Old English ā.
a reflex radio receiver.
a reflex camera.
verb (used with object)
to subject to a reflex process.
to bend, turn, or fold back.
to arrange in a reflex system.
Words nearby reflex
Origin of reflex
1500–10; < Latin reflexus bent back, past participle of reflectere to reflect
OTHER WORDS FROM reflexre·flex·ly, adverbre·flex·ness, nounmul·ti·re·flex, nounsem·i·re·flex, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for reflex-act
- an immediate involuntary response, esp one that is innate, such as coughing or removal of the hand from a hot surface, evoked by a given stimulus
- (as modifier)a reflex action See also reflex arc
- a mechanical response to a particular situation, involving no conscious decision
- (as modifier)a reflex response
a reflection; an image produced by or as if by reflection
a speech element derived from a corresponding form in an earlier state of the language"sorrow" is a reflex of Middle English "sorwe"
maths (of an angle) between 180° and 360°
(prenominal) turned, reflected, or bent backwards
(tr) to bend, turn, or reflect backwards
Derived forms of reflexreflexible, adjectivereflexibility, noun
Word Origin for reflex
C16: from Latin reflexus bent back, from reflectere to reflect
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
Medicine definitions for reflex-act
[ rē′flĕks′ ]
An involuntary physiological response to a stimulus.
An unlearned or instinctive response to a stimulus.
Something, such as light or heat, that is reflected.
Being an involuntary action or response, such as a sneeze, blink, or hiccup.
Bent, turned, or thrown back; reflected.
To cause to undergo a reflex process.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Science definitions for reflex-act
[ rē′flĕks′ ]
An involuntary physiological response to a stimulus, as the withdrawal of a body part from burning heat.
An unlearned or instinctive response to a stimulus. Also called unconditioned response See more at classical conditioning.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Culture definitions for reflex-act
An action or movement not controlled by conscious thought. A reflex may be anything from a hiccup to the involuntary response of a body part, such as the action that occurs in the knee-jerk reflex.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.