WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2017
ver•bal /ˈvɜrbəl/USA pronunciation   adj. 
  1. of or relating to words:verbal ability.
  2. Pronounsspoken rather than written;
    oral:verbal communication.
  3. Grammar[before a noun]
    • Grammarof, relating to, or derived from a verb:a verbal adjective.
    • Grammarused in a sentence as or like a verb.

n. [countable]
  1. Grammara word, esp. a noun or adjective, derived from a verb, as a gerund, infinitive, or participle.
  2. Grammara word or group of words functioning as or like a verb.
ver•bal•ly, adv. See -verb-.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
ver•bal  (vûrbəl),USA pronunciation adj. 
  1. of or pertaining to words:verbal ability.
  2. consisting of or in the form of words:verbal imagery.
  3. Pronounsexpressed in spoken words;
    oral rather than written:verbal communication; verbal agreement.
  4. consisting of or expressed in words (as opposed to actions):a verbal protest.
  5. pertaining to or concerned with words only (as opposed to ideas, facts, or realities):a purely verbal distinction between two concepts.
  6. corresponding word for word;
    verbatim:a verbal translation.
  7. using words:verbal facility.
  8. based on the use of words (as opposed to other activity):a verbal score in a test; verbal IQ.
  9. Grammar
    • of, pertaining to, or derived from a verb.
    • used in a sentence as or like a verb, as participles and infinitives.

  1. Grammara word, particularly a noun or adjective, derived from a verb.
verbal•ly, adv. 
  • Latin verbālis, equivalent. to verb(um) word (see verb) + -ālis -al1
  • 1485–95
    • 3.See corresponding entry in Unabridged spoken.
    3, 4. Verbal has had the meaning "spoken'' since the late 16th century and is thus synonymous with oral: He wrote a memorandum to confirm the verbal agreement. Slightly earlier, verbal had developed the meaning "expressed in words, whether spoken or written (as opposed to actions)'':Verbal support is no help without money and supplies.Although some say that the use of verbal to mean "spoken'' produces ambiguity, it rarely does so. Verbal is used in this sense in all varieties of speech and writing and is fully standard. The context usually makes the meaning clear:No documents are necessary; a verbal agreement(or contract or order) will suffice. Oral can be used instead of verbal if the context demands:My lawyer insists on a written contract because oral agreements are too difficult to enforce.

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

verbal /ˈvɜːbəl/ adj
  1. of, relating to, or using words, esp as opposed to ideas, etc: merely verbal concessions
  2. oral rather than written: a verbal agreement
  3. verbatim; literal: an almost verbal copy
  4. of or relating to verbs or a verb
  1. (plural) slang abuse or invective
vb ( -bals, -balling, -balled)(transitive)
  1. slang (of the police) to implicate (someone) in a crime by quoting alleged admission of guilt in court

ˈverbally adv

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