cap·​i·​tal·​ist | \ ˈka-pə-tə-list How to pronounce capitalist (audio) , ˈkap-tə-\

Definition of capitalist

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a person who has capital especially invested in business industrial capitalists broadly : a person of wealth : plutocrat Charitable organizations often seek help from capitalists.
2 : a person who favors capitalism


variants: or capitalistic \ ˌka-​pə-​tə-​ˈli-​stik How to pronounce capitalistic (audio) , ˌkap-​tə-​ \

Definition of capitalist (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : owning capital the capitalist class
2a : practicing or advocating capitalism capitalist nations
b : marked by capitalism capitalist period of history

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Other Words from capitalist


capitalistically \ ˌka-​pə-​tə-​ˈli-​sti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce capitalistically (audio) , ˌkap-​tə-​ \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for capitalist

Synonyms: Noun

Croesus, deep pocket, fat cat, have, money, moneybags, plutocrat, silk stocking

Antonyms: Noun

have-not, pauper

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Examples of capitalist in a Sentence


capitalists who lost everything in the '29 Crash

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Over and over again, venture capitalists won favorable regulatory change. Avi Asher-schapiro, The New Republic, "The Very Small World of VC," 18 July 2019 Venture capitalists have an appetite for the world’s oldest social media network: email. Polina Marinova, Fortune, "Andreessen Horowitz Leads $15.3 Million Funding Round in Newsletter Publishing Platform Substack," 16 July 2019 Peter Thiel, a venture capitalist who is involved with several Google competitors, called for U.S law enforcement to investigate the search company. Irina Ivanova, CBS News, "Trump says he'll look at Peter Thiel's accusation that Google is committing treason," 16 July 2019 Following him is his brother, Matti, an unadulterated capitalist who’s set on launching his own logging outfit. Mark Athitakis,, "Karl Marlantes pens another spirited epic, this time about immigrants, logging and labor," 11 July 2019 For now, though, venture capitalists who have been waiting for their big companies to find an exit have something to celebrate. Alison Griswold, Quartz, "Venture capitalists are cashing out in a big way," 11 July 2019 Many a venture capitalist or entrepreneur in the Valley would sympathise with David Ulevitch of Andreessen Horowitz, a big venture-capital firm, who recently likened his overflowing inbox to the final level of Tetris, a classic video game. The Economist, "Superhuman tries to reinvent email," 11 July 2019 That’s not to say the filmmaking is slovenly or the acting lacks commitment, but the observations regarding Montreal’s homeless population and the inequities of our entire global economic capitalist system become, well, fishy. Michael Phillips, Detroit Free Press, "‘Fall of the American Empire’ is annoyingly preachy," 11 July 2019 Following him is his brother, Matti, an unadulterated capitalist who’s set on launching his own logging outfit. Mark Athitakis, Washington Post, "‘Deep River’ bucks every literary trend, and that’s what makes it so charming," 8 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

And in the latter years under communist rule, TV networks introduced advertising — a capitalist conceit that was molded to socialist need. Los Angeles Times, "Datebook: Jasmine Little etches the history of art into contemporary ceramics," 18 July 2019 Wealth-creating capitalist economies, on the other hand, can hardly be said to have resolved those problems or made the world more inhabitable for future generations. Pankaj Mishra, Twin Cities, "Pankaj Mishra: Putin’s wrong, but so are liberals," 11 July 2019 Mr Piketty and others say that inequality naturally rises in capitalist countries, and that political power becomes concentrated alongside economic power in an unstable way. The Economist, "How compatible are democracy and capitalism?," 13 June 2019 The attempt to label what are capitalist countries with a few socialists social systems on top of those as socialist countries as a whole. Fox News, "Graham on discussing Mueller probe with Trump, Iran policy," 9 Aug. 2018 Communist predictions of the self-immolation of capitalist societies seemed to be stunningly validated. Joseph Loconte, WSJ, "The Versailles Treaty Gets a Bum Rap," 27 June 2019 Its free-for-all philosophy, paired with Google’s hyper-capitalist advertising machine, went from public square to farm league, with the most compelling, or at least the loudest, self-broadcasters making it to the big time. Owen Thomas,, "‘Broadcast yourself,’ YouTube told us. It might want to rephrase that," 12 June 2019 The group’s politics were anti-capitalist, anti-government, and anti-modern technology, rooted in a 300-page document called The Guidelines. Kim Kelly, Teen Vogue, "The History of the Black Radical Group MOVE and Its Infamous Bombing by Police," 17 May 2019 As long as the United States remains a free, capitalist, and open society, there will be millions of people around the world that would like to come here. Fox News, "Nigel Farage talks Alfie Evans and Britain's medical system," 28 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'capitalist.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of capitalist


1774, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1845, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for capitalist


see capital entry 2


see capital entry 2

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Statistics for capitalist

Last Updated

21 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for capitalist

The first known use of capitalist was in 1774

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More Definitions for capitalist



English Language Learners Definition of capitalist

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who has a lot of money, property, etc., and who uses those things to produce more money
: a person who believes that capitalism is the best kind of economic system



English Language Learners Definition of capitalist (Entry 2 of 2)

: of or relating to capitalism : using capitalism as an economic system


cap·​i·​tal·​ist | \ ˈka-pə-tə-list How to pronounce capitalist (audio) \

Kids Definition of capitalist

1 : a person who has usually a lot of money which is used to make more money
2 : a person who supports capitalism

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Comments on capitalist

What made you want to look up capitalist? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to complain fretfully

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