When you can touch something, it's tangible: "I need tangible proof that aliens exist — I want to shake their little green hands!"

Tangible is from Latin tangere, "to touch," and it simply means something that can be touched or felt, though it can be used in metaphorical senses: tangible assets have a value that can be precisely measured, and tangible grief can be clearly sensed by an onlooker. So you might not need to physically touch something for it to be tangible, but it has to be grounded in the real world of facts: "Has the teen pop star demonstrated any tangible ability to sing?"

Definitions of tangible
  1. adjective
    perceptible by the senses, especially the sense of touch
    “skin with a tangible roughness”
    synonyms: touchable
    capable of being perceived by the senses; not abstract or imaginary
    tactile, tactual
    producing a sensation of touch
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    impalpable, intangible
    incapable of being perceived by the senses especially the sense of touch
    existing only in the mind; separated from embodiment
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  2. adjective
    capable of being perceived; especially capable of being handled or touched or felt
    synonyms: palpable
    easily perceived by the senses or grasped by the mind
    capable of being perceived by the mind or senses
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    imperceptible to the senses or the mind
    elusive, subtle
    difficult to detect or grasp by the mind or analyze
    imperceptible, unperceivable
    impossible or difficult to perceive by the mind or senses
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  3. adjective
    capable of being treated as fact
    tangible evidence”
    synonyms: real
    capable of being perceived by the senses; not abstract or imaginary
  4. adjective
    (of especially business assets) having physical substance and intrinsic monetary value
    tangible property like real estate”
    tangible assets such as machinery”
    (of property) fixed or immovable
    capable of being realized
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    (of especially business assets) not having physical substance or intrinsic productive value
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