1. Relating to the physical and especially sexual appetites: carnal desire.
2. Worldly or earthly; temporal: the carnal world.
3. Of or relating to the body or flesh; bodily: carnal remains.
[Middle English, from Old North French carnel, from Latin carnālis, from Latin carō, carn-, flesh; see sker-1 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
car·nali·ty (kär-nălĭ-tē) n.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.