from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Of or relating to systems or a system.
  • adj. Relating to or affecting the entire body or an entire organism: systemic symptoms; a systemic poison.
  • adj. Relating to or affecting a particular body system, especially the nervous system: a systemic lesion.
  • adj. Physiology Of or relating to systemic circulation.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Embedded within and spread throughout and affecting a group, system, body, economy, market, or society as a whole.
  • adj. Pertaining to an entire organism.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or relating to a system; common to a system.
  • adj. Of or pertaining to the general system, or the body as a whole.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Of or pertaining to system or systematization; systematic.
  • In physiology, pertaining to the body as a whole; somatic; common to a general system; not local: as, systemic circulation.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. affecting an entire system


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • In his latest weekly column, Wolf doesn't actually use the term "systemic risk," but everything he says points in that direction.

    The Washington Post: National, World & D.C. Area News and Headlines - The Washington Post

  • In 1895, a renowned physician, Sir William Osier, recognized that some forms of lupus involved more than just a rash and actually affected internal organs, and he added the word systemic to the name.


  • —A Democratic candidate for Pennsylvania attorney general Thursday will propose ways of fixing what he calls a systemic failure to protect children from sexual abusers in the state.

    Attorney General Hopeful Wants Child-Sex-Crimes Database

  • The probe stemmed in part from a complaint that the New Jersey chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union filed in September over what it called systemic misconduct in the department and lax oversight.

    Civil Rights Probe in Newark

  • Thursday President Obama blamed the incident on what he called a "systemic failure across organizations and agencies."

    Attention Turns to Yemen in Anti-Terror Fight

  • That's why tomorrow is the deadline for the president's national security team where he gave them a deadline for the preliminary findings for what he called systemic and human failures that led to this attempted terror attack.

    CNN Transcript Dec 30, 2009

  • They brought in about 50 officers from the academy to do what they call a systemic grid search of several areas related to this crime.

    CNN Transcript Oct 29, 2008

  • But they had many, dozens of police recruits from the Police Academy here in Chicago going on what they called the systemic grid in the area where that missing SUV was found that had the nephew of Jennifer Hudson in it.

    CNN Transcript Oct 30, 2008

  • There is also a notable expression of what we refer to as systemic frustration among the supporters of employment equity.

    ANC Today

  • But he added that he had become disillusioned with what he termed systemic corruption and hypocrisy in cycling and was pessimistic that the doping culture could ever change.

    Yahoo! News: Business - Opinion


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