Definition of seminal in English:



  • 1Strongly influencing later developments.

    ‘his seminal work on chaos theory’
    • ‘Though based on the West Coast she had a seminal influence on the New York experimental dance scene and during the early 1960s her works appeared in avant-garde festivals in Europe.’
    • ‘All inductees, whose seminal work has been influential in the medical and scientific worlds, are pioneers in their respective fields.’
    • ‘Irish music and song brought to America by generations of immigrants have played a seminal role in the development of America's folk and country music.’
    • ‘Both writers were a seminal influence on early gangsta rap.’
    • ‘In 1870 he produced a seminal volume that would influence generations of garden-makers throughout the world.’
    • ‘This was one of the seminal developments of the century.’
    • ‘The establishment of fisheries commissions, and the gradual enlargement of their powers, was a seminal development.’
    • ‘Both albums are seminal in tracing the development of a movement that is maturing rapidly, but not losing sight of its roots.’
    • ‘How do you market a house that represents one of the seminal moments in the development of our culture?’
    • ‘Their work was seminal in the development of abstract art generally and the Expressionist movement particularly.’
    • ‘‘Gaz’ was a seminal influence on Koz, who admired and to some extent emulated the older man's daring and defiant individuality.’
    • ‘This second publication proved much less successful than the first, which remained seminal in the development of scientific thought.’
    • ‘A seminal influence was watching his mother on stage as Martha in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?’
    • ‘The artist has had a seminal influence on the development of modern Irish music, since he first hit the scene in Dublin in the 1960s.’
    • ‘The other investigates the philosophical equivalent of the big bang, which is to say the seminal influences on the human mind.’
    • ‘It is ironic that such a seminal development takes place inside a rifle that outwardly is so similar to a percussion Model 700.’
    • ‘Andre frequently cited Stonehenge, which he visited on his first trip to Europe at age nineteen, as a seminal influence on his sculpture.’
    • ‘It continues to be our view that the unfolding dislocation in the derivatives marketplace, the linchpin for the money and credit bubble, is a similarly seminal development.’
    • ‘Neither the insipid colouring nor the androgynous figures help to give the fresco presence, but it remains a seminal work in the development of Neoclassicism.’
    • ‘The rugged brick and timber house he designed for his family on a sloping bush site in Chatswood in 1963 was a seminal work that greatly influenced the development of the Sydney School.’
    influential, formative, groundbreaking, pioneering, original, creative, innovative
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  • 2Relating to or denoting semen.

    ‘the spermatozoa are washed to separate them from the seminal plasma’
    • ‘In mice, the signal that facilitates sperm movement probably does not reside in the seminal fluid but is provided by the sperm themselves.’
    • ‘In addition, he says, the seminal fluid of the male coagulates to form a plug in the female that stays in place until pregnancy and likely prevents further mating.’
    • ‘The African Chiromantis builds arboreal foam nests, which may be, in part, made of seminal fluid.’
    • ‘In the operating room scurry the seminal vesicles which transport seminal fluid may have been cut, or he suffered secondary infection, leaving him sterile, though certainly not impotent.’
    • ‘Vasectomy works by using a clip to block the vas deferens, which connects the testicles to the urethra and keeps sperm out of the seminal fluid.’
    • ‘The seminal plasma of mammals is a complex fluid, which serves as a carrier for the spermatozoa in their journey from the male testes to their target, the female uterus.’
    • ‘At the same time the seminal vesicles and prostate gland contract and release seminal fluid into the urethra.’
    • ‘Preparation of sperm for assisted conception: motile sperm can be successfully separated from seminal plasma using density gradients such as Puresperm.’
    • ‘During routine sperm preparation for use in assisted conception, sperm are separated from their seminal plasma in order to concentrate the subpopulation with the best morphology and motility.’
    • ‘The caput and caudal epididymal regions were separated, and washed with ice-cold physiological saline in order to remove seminal plasma.’
    • ‘In Drosophila species, the male accessory gland secretes seminal fluids transferred to the female during copulation.’
    • ‘In addition to its role in sperm competition, seminal fluid stimulates oviposition and reduces female receptivity to future mating.’
    • ‘The seminal vesicles and prostate gland produce a whitish fluid called seminal fluid, which mixes with sperm to form semen when a male is sexually stimulated.’
    • ‘In that case, hypersensitivity to human seminal plasma was diagnosed.’
    • ‘Lahn's group studied semenogelin, a major protein in the seminal fluid that controls the viscosity of semen immediately following ejaculation.’
    • ‘He suggested that the secretions of the testis were present in the seminal fluid containing sperm.’
    • ‘It is present in serum, urine, and seminal fluid and is responsible for liquefying semen immediately following ejaculation.’
    • ‘The seminal plasma of mammals contains a group of acidic proteins that bind to the spermatozoa.’
    • ‘These males also ejaculated more seminal fluid and produced longer sperm than did their guarding competitors.’
    • ‘Drosophila melanogaster seminal fluid proteins stimulate sperm storage and egg laying in the mated female but also cause a reduction in her life span.’
    spermatic, sperm, seed
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    1. 2.1Botany Relating to or derived from the seed of a plant.
      ‘the seminal root system’
      • ‘In the uniform exodermis of seminal roots of Zea mays, intact plasmodesmata were found even in exodermal cells where the walls were suberized.’
      • ‘One week after germination, plants were transferred into hydroponic conditions with Hoagland solution, and the seminal shoots were cut off.’
      • ‘Seminal roots do not form a coleorhiza since the scutellar node tissue is already differentiated when seminal roots emerge and can easily be penetrated.’
      • ‘The seedlings when submerged had only primary roots and rudimentary seminal roots.’
      • ‘Upon the death of the seminal root the plant fragments into several independent stolon systems and begins the clonal stage of its life cycle.’


Late Middle English (in seminal (sense 2)): from Old French seminal or Latin seminalis, from semen ‘seed’. seminal (sense 1) dates from the mid 17th century.