American English

Definition of human adjective from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[only before noun] of or connected with people rather than animals, machines, or gods the human body/brain human anatomy/activity/behavior/experience a terrible loss of human life Contact with other people is a basic human need. This food is not fit for human consumption. human geography (= the study of the way different people live around the world) The hostages were used as a human shield (= a person or group of people that is forced to stay in a particular place where they would be hurt or killed if their country attacked it). Firefighters formed a human chain (= a line of people) to carry the children to safety. Human remains (= the body of a dead person) were found inside the house.
  2. 2showing the weaknesses that are typical of people, which means that other people should not criticize the person too much human weaknesses/failings We must allow for human error. It's only human to want the best for your children.
  3. 3having the same feelings and emotions as most ordinary people He's really very human when you get to know him. The public is always attracted to politicians who have the human touch (= the ability to make ordinary people feel relaxed when they meet them). compare inhuman, nonhuman
  4. Idioms
    the human face of…
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    a person who is involved in a subject, issue, etc. and makes it easier for ordinary people to understand and have sympathy with it He is the human face of party politics.
    the milk of human kindness (literary)
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    kind behavior, considered to be natural to humans
    with a human face
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    that considers the needs of ordinary people This was science with a human face.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: human