- pertaining to that part of the autonomic nervous system consisting of nerves that arise from the thoracic and lumbar regions of the spinal cord, and functioning in opposition to the parasympathetic system, as in stimulating heartbeat, dilating the pupil of the eye, etc.
- Obsolete.pertaining to the autonomic nervous system in its entirety.
Origin of sympathetic
Synonyms for sympathetic
Examples from the Web for sympathetically
Contemporary Examples of sympathetically
Hellman's dishonesty in her later writing is sympathetically framed by the decades of criticism she had endured.Lillian Hellman, Clarence Birdseye and Thai Jones: Must Read Nonfiction
Victoria Beale, Wendy Smith, Kevin Canfield
May 17, 2012
Historical Examples of sympathetically
"Better not try to describe her—while I'm by, you know," said Mrs. Drelmer, sympathetically.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
"I wonder that you take her to drive with you," suggested Philip, sympathetically.Malbone
Thomas Wentworth Higginson
"I think that's a good mare of yours, Mr. Porter," said Crane, sympathetically.Thoroughbreds
W. A. Fraser
"I should say you've got a pretty good handful," Lady Pen said sympathetically.Jan and Her Job
L. Allen Harker
Polly squeezed it sympathetically, and told him how sorry she was for his accident.Polly of Lady Gay Cottage
Emma C. Dowd
1640s, "pertaining to sympathy," from Modern Latin sympatheticus, from Greek sympathetikos, from sympathein, from sympathes "having a fellow feeling, affected by like feelings" (see sympathy). Meaning "having fellow feeling" is recorded from 1718. In anatomical sense, the word is attested from 1769, from Modern Latin (nervus) sympathicus, coined by Jacques-Benigne Winslow (1669-1760), Danish anatomist living in Paris. Related: Sympathetically.