American Dictionary of the English Language

Webster's Dictionary 1828

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PHYS'ICAL, adjective Pertaining to nature or natural productions, or to material things, as opposed to things moral or imaginary. We speak of physical force or power, with reference to material things; as, muscular strength is physical force; armies and navies are the physical force of a nation; whereas wisdom, knowledge, skill, etc. constitute moral force. A physical point is a real point, in distinction from a mathematical or imaginary point. A physical body or substance is a material body or substance, in distinction from spirit or metaphysical substance.

1. External; perceptible to the senses; as the physical characters of a mineral; opposed to chimical.

2. Relating to the art of healing; as a physical treatise.

3. Having the property of evacuating the bowels; as physical herbs.

4. Medicinal; promoting the cure of diseases.

5. Resembling physic; as a physical taste.

[In the three latter senses, nearly obsolete among professional men.]

Physical education, the education which is directed to the object of giving strength, health and vigor to the bodily organs and powers.