See more synonyms for sonic on
  1. of or relating to sound.
  2. noting or pertaining to a speed equal to that of sound in air at the same height above sea level.

Origin of sonic

1920–25; < Latin son(us) sound1 + -ic
Related formsmul·ti·son·ic, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for sonic

Contemporary Examples of sonic

Historical Examples of sonic

  • Like a sonic direction finder, Buregarde turned his head and listened.

    History Repeats

    George Oliver Smith

  • "No, it is not sonic control," Brucco answered with a sober face.


    Harry Harrison

  • Ashe touched the find and then gave the alert via the sonic code.

    Key Out of Time

    Andre Alice Norton

  • Loy's box, with its recorded English words and its sonic detectors, could translate for its master, too.

    The Eternal Wall

    Raymond Zinke Gallun

  • Then they tried other weapons—pistols, sonic beams, grenades—but always wearing protective equipment.

    The Dueling Machine

    Benjamin William Bova

British Dictionary definitions for sonic


  1. of, involving, or producing sound
  2. having a speed about equal to that of sound in air: 331 metres per second (741 miles per hour) at 0°C

Word Origin for sonic

C20: from Latin sonus sound
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 sonic

1923, from Latin sonus "sound" (see sound (n.1)) + -ic. Sonic boom is attested from 1952.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

sonic in Medicine


  1. Of, relating to, or determined by audible sound.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.