Definition of acuity in English:



  • Sharpness or keenness of thought, vision, or hearing.

    ‘intellectual acuity’
    ‘visual acuity’
    • ‘Although their hearing thus lacks acuity, anatomical studies suggest that their vomeronasal and olfactory systems are well developed.’
    • ‘Tinnitus is a common symptom of noise overexposure, and it further interferes with hearing acuity, sleep and concentration.’
    • ‘New research by psychologists in the United States argues that ordinary social contact is at least as useful as more formal intellectual activities in preserving mental acuity.’
    • ‘We must engage visual, hearing and speaking acuity.’
    • ‘It begins with observation, with reporting, rendering the facts of our inner and outer reality with acuity sharpened by imagination.’
    • ‘In any case, sensitivity and acuity on the part of her editors should have meant the deletion of the worst of the inaccurate and offensive references, or the rejection of the piece as a whole.’
    • ‘The acuity of hearing and vision may deteriorate.’
    • ‘But what is not as widely known is that diabetes also causes cognitive decline, from a subtle loss of mental acuity to a heightened risk for Alzheimer's disease.’
    • ‘Students were chosen on the basis of interest, intellectual acuity, career field, and career patterns.’
    • ‘Even the most peripheral characters are portrayed with acuity.’
    • ‘Among the still photographs shown were several that also tested perceptual acuity.’
    • ‘One of the authors treated an otherwise healthy 30-year old female with poor acuity, impaired night vision, and myopia.’
    • ‘His vitality, acuity and integrity remain intact.’
    • ‘Nothing is more important to the development of acuity in visual thought than drawing.’
    • ‘The Cardinal has diagnosed our ills with characteristic acuity.’
    • ‘I have a hearing loss that limits my hearing acuity and comprehension to less than 50 per cent.’
    • ‘Here though, I'm uncertain whether Boshoff's chosen subject matter is able to carry both his intellectual acuity and visual dexterity.’
    • ‘Visual acuity is an important element of good vision, but not the only element.’
    • ‘Columnist for Vanity Fair and for brain-boggling US journal The Nation, Hitchens has a fierce reputation for intellectual and political acuity.’
    • ‘Usually, the lower back is weak and sore, there is ringing in the ears and loss of hearing acuity, the face is ashen or dark, especially under the eyes.’
    insight, discernment, perception, perceptiveness, intelligence, sharp-wittedness, quick-wittedness, cleverness, smartness, incisiveness, keenness, sharpness, trenchancy, astuteness, shrewdness, acuteness, subtlety, clarity, discrimination, sensitivity, thoughtfulness, profundity, percipience, perspicacity, perspicuity, sagacity
    View synonyms


Late Middle English: from Old French acuite or medieval Latin acuitas, from Latin acuere ‘sharpen’ (see acute).