ESSEN'TIAL, a. [L. essentialis.] Necessary to the constitution or existence of a thing. Piety and good works are essential to the christian character. Figure and extension are essential properties of bodies.

And if each system in gradation roll,

Alike essential to the amazing whole--

1. Important in the highest degree.

Judgment is more essential to a general than courage.

2. Pure; highly rectified. Essential oils are such as are drawn from plants by distillation in an alembic with water, as distinguished from empyreumatic oils, which are raised by a naked fire without water.

ESSEN'TIAL, n. Existence; being. [Little used.]

1. First or constituent principles; as the essentials of religion.

2. The chief point; that which is most important.