Etymology
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painful (adj.)

mid-14c., peineful, "characterized by or attended by pain" (originally of the Crucifixion), from pain (n.) + -ful. Meaning "causing physical pain" is from c. 1400; that of "inflicting pain" (of punishments, etc.) is by mid-15c. Related: Painfully; painfulness.

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sensation (n.)

1610s, "a reaction to external stimulation of the sense organs," from French sensation (14c.) and directly from Medieval Latin sensationem (nominative sensatio) "perception," from Late Latin sensatus "endowed with sense, sensible," from Latin sensus "feeling" (see sense (n.)).

The general sense of "action or faculty of receiving a mental impression from any affectation of the body" is attested in English by 1640s.

The great object of life is sensation — to feel that we exist, even though in pain. It is this 'craving void' which drives us to gaming — to battle, to travel — to intemperate, but keenly felt, pursuits of any description, whose principal attraction is the agitation inseparable from their accomplishment. [Lord Byron, letter, Sept. 6, 1813]

 The meaning "state of shock, surprise, or excited feeling or interest in a community" is recorded by 1779. Meaning "that which produces excited interest or feeling in a community" is by 1864.

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anguish (n.)

c. 1200, "acute bodily or mental suffering," from Old French anguisse, angoisse "choking sensation, distress, anxiety, rage" (12c.), from Latin angustia (plural angustiae) "tightness, straitness, narrowness;" figuratively "distress, difficulty," from ang(u)ere "to throttle, torment" (from PIE root *angh- "tight, painfully constricted, painful").

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tic douloureux (n.)

1798, French, literally "painful twitching;" see tic.

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biting (adj.)

c. 1300, "sharply painful," present-participle adjective from bite (v.). The sense of "pungent, sharp in taste" is from mid-14c.; that of "sarcastic, painful to the mind or feelings" is from late 14c. Related: Bitingly.

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excruciating (adj.)

"extremely painful," 1590s, present-participle adjective from excruciate. Related: Excruciatingly.

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sensorium (n.)

"the seat of sensation in the brain of humans and higher animals," 1640s, from Late Latin sensorium "the seat or organ of sensation," from sens-, past-participle stem of sentire "to feel" (see sense (n.)) + -orium (see -ory). Related: Sensorial.

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sensory (adj.)

"of or pertaining to sense or sensation, conveying sensation," 1749, from Latin sensorius, from sensus, past participle of sentire "to perceive, feel" (see sense (n.)).

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tingle (v.)

late 14c., "to have a ringing sensation when hearing something," also "to have a stinging or thrilling feeling," variation of tinkelen (see tinkle). Related: Tingled; tingling. The noun is first recorded 1700 in reference to sound, 1848 in reference to sensation.

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sensational (adj.)

1840, "of or pertaining to sensation or the senses, implying perception through the senses;" 1863, in reference to a literary or artistic work, "aiming at violently excited effects, intended to excite violent emotions;" from sensation in its secondary sense. Related: Sensationalistic; sensationalistically.

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