Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1300-1400
Language: Old French
Origin: sensitif, from Medieval Latin sensitivus, from Latin sensus; SENSE1

sensitive

adjective
     
sen‧si‧tive S3 W3
1

understanding people

able to understand other people's feelings and problems [≠ insensitive]:
a sensitive and intelligent young man
sensitive to
It's made me much more sensitive to the needs of the disabled.
2

easily offended

easily upset or offended by events or things that people say:
a very sensitive child
sensitive about
Laura's sensitive about her weight.
sensitive to
Throughout her career she remained very sensitive to criticism.
sensitive soul British English (=someone who is easily upset by small or unimportant things)
hypersensitive
3

easily affected

easily affected or damaged by something such as a substance or temperature:
Wetlands are environmentally sensitive areas.
a baby's sensitive skin
sensitive to
Older people tend to be very sensitive to cold.
Increasing numbers of people are sensitive to cow's milk.
4

situation/subject

a situation or subject that is sensitive needs to be dealt with very carefully, because it is secret or because it may offend people:
Abortion is a very sensitive issue.
sensitive matters such as national security
highly sensitive information
5

reacting to changes

reacting to very small changes in light, temperature, position etc:
a highly sensitive electronic camera
light-sensitive/heat-sensitive etc
light-sensitive photographic paper
6

art/music etc

able to understand or express yourself through art, music, literature etc:
a very sensitive performance
sensitively adverb:
It is an issue which needs to be handled sensitively.
WORD FOCUS: difficult WORD FOCUS: difficult
difficult to do: hard, tough, challenging, daunting

difficult and needing a lot of physical effort: tough, strenuous, back-breaking, gruelling, arduous, punishing

difficult to deal with or talk about: tricky, awkward, delicate, sensitive, touchy

words for describing a difficult person: awkward, trying

words for describing difficult conditions: adverse, hostile


See also
difficult

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