[ex.ter.nal] adj [L externus external, fr. exter] (1556) 1 a: capable of being perceived outwardly "~ signs of a disease" "~ reality" b (1): having merely the outward appearance of something: superficial (2): not intrinsic or essential "~ circumstances"
2. a: of, relating to, or connected with the outside or an outer part b: applied or applicable to the outside 3 a (1): situated outside, apart, or beyond; specif: situated near or toward the surface of the body (2): arising or acting from outside "~ force" b: of or relating to dealings or relationships with foreign countries c: having existence independent of the mind "~ reality" -- ex.ter.nal.ly adv
external n (ca. 1635): something that is external: as a: an outer part b: an external feature or aspect--usu. used in pl.