apoc·​a·​lyp·​tic ə-ˌpä-kə-ˈlip-tik How to pronounce apocalyptic (audio)
variants or less commonly apocalyptical
: of, relating to, or resembling an apocalypse
apocalyptic events
: forecasting the ultimate destiny of the world : prophetic
apocalyptic warnings
: foreboding imminent disaster or final doom : terrible
apocalyptic signs of the coming end-times
: wildly unrestrained : grandiose
: ultimately decisive : climactic
an apocalyptic battle
apocalyptically adverb

Examples of apocalyptic in a Sentence

No one listened to her apocalyptic predictions. a less apocalyptic view of the future the apocalyptic destruction of the world
Recent Examples on the Web Perhaps, as has been suggested, our A.I. worries will years from now turn out to have been just another passing apocalyptic fancy, on the order of Y2K. Thomas Mallon, The New Yorker, 20 Nov. 2023 Music that bleeds with the apocalyptic collisions of bounce beat-era go-go and the lyrical belligerence of drill. Alphonse Pierre, Pitchfork, 17 Nov. 2023 As a child, my dreams of Los Angeles were often apocalyptic. Aisha Sabatini Sloan, Los Angeles Times, 16 Nov. 2023 Though devastated by apocalyptic floods in 2022, this northeastern corner of New South Wales is making a comeback. Cnt Editors, Condé Nast Traveler, 15 Nov. 2023 Um Tae-hwa's dystopian drama is set just after an apocalyptic earthquake in a Seoul apartment complex, which the residents turn into a fortress. Owen Gleiberman, Variety, 11 Nov. 2023 Bloomberg reported Ron DeSantis’ campaign released fake images of his rival Donald Trump posing with Anthony Fauci in June and that the Republican National Committee promoted a faked video of an apocalyptic US blaming the Biden administration. Emilia David, The Verge, 8 Nov. 2023 However, questions remained about just how long the sun was blocked and how a prolonged period of darkness caused apocalyptic damage and shaped a new age of evolution on Earth. Michael Lee, Fox News, 4 Nov. 2023 Godzilla is thus an apocalyptic figure, in the strictest sense of the word: a thing of unmasking, of revelation. Asher Elbein, Scientific American, 3 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'apocalyptic.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


borrowed from New Latin apocalypticus, derivative of apocalypsis apocalypse, by analogy with pairs such as ellīpsis ellipsis : ellīpticus elliptic

First Known Use

1633, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of apocalyptic was in 1633

Dictionary Entries Near apocalyptic

Cite this Entry

“Apocalyptic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/apocalyptic. Accessed 5 Dec. 2023.

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