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

Antonyms: Noun

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Examples of capitalist in a Sentence

Noun capitalists who lost everything in the '29 Crash
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun But more than a dozen experts, venture capitalists and biotech veterans who spoke with STAT acknowledged that smaller biotechs would ultimately be hit hardest by the bill’s policy changes. Nicholas Florko, STAT, "It’s tiny biotechs — not big drug makers — that fear ‘nuclear winter’ from Pelosi’s drug pricing bill," 12 Nov. 2019 There’s also concern that much of the industry’s innovation is coming from Silicon Valley startups backed by venture capitalists whose focus on maximizing consumption might override public safety worries. Lydia Mulvany And Deena Shanker | Bloomberg, Washington Post, "The Vegan Economy," 24 Sep. 2019 And so the most influential operating system ever written was not funded by venture capitalists, and the people who wrote it didn’t become billionaires because of it. Richard Jensen, Ars Technica, "Unix at 50: How the OS that powered smartphones started from failure," 29 Aug. 2019 The venture capital ecosystem is small, insularly connected, and dominated by venture capitalists who don’t reflect the diversity of many startups that seek funding. Allyson Kapin, Quartz, "We’ve debunked tech’s “pipeline problem.” So why aren’t more women getting funding?," 24 July 2019 The round was led by venture capitalists at Greycroft in New York City, with money chipped in by billionaire tech investor Michael Loeb. Brittany Meiling, San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego startup Mercato — ‘Instacart for indie grocers’ — gets $4M from VCs," 2 July 2019 Maybe the next big cybersecurity bet by venture capitalists will involve startups that specialize in A.I. that detects hackers, merely by listening to their voices. Jonathan Vanian, Fortune, "Investors Go 'Phishing' For Gold In the Cybersecurity Market—Cyber Saturday," 22 June 2019 Well, a robot unwanted at least by venture capitalists—some 200 investors that TickTock tried to convince to cough up cash before the startup closed down. Matt Simon, WIRED, "A Robotics Startup Perishes, and It’s Got Tales to Tell," 1 May 2018 Venture capitalists and other pampered types may need sleep consultants. Adam Lashinsky, Fortune, "Can a Mattress Startup Be a Tech Company, Too?—Data Sheet," 16 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The massive cast moves across the 20th century, spanning feminism and socialism, potraying the gangster-government axis and even the capitalist rise of computer technology. Darren Franich,, "Elena Ferrante's Neapolitan Novels are the best book series of the decade," 15 Nov. 2019 Even three decades after the end of the Cold War, scholars still find substantial differences in aptitude and professional success between women in capitalist and former state socialist countries. Kristen R. Ghodsee, Quartz, "What the US can learn from women in the Soviet workforce," 13 Nov. 2019 Fonda's five decades of activism stretch back to Paris, in 1968, a year of global civil unrest, widespread anti-capitalist protests, and a massive general strike that brought France to a standstill. Kim Kelly, Teen Vogue, "Jane Fonda On the Climate Crisis, Getting Arrested and Five Decades of Activism," 8 Nov. 2019 Premadasa’s nomination gives a new face to the party, which has long been considered pro-West, pro-capitalist and distant from the grassroots. Washington Post, "Sri Lanka’s governing party picks Premadasa as candidate," 27 Sep. 2019 Premadasa’s nomination gives a new face to the party, which has long been considered pro-West, pro-capitalist and distant from the grassroots. Krishan Francis, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Sri Lanka’s governing party picks Premadasa as candidate," 26 Sep. 2019 Saturday marks the 30th anniversary of the Fall of the Berlin Wall, when, on Nov. 9, 1989, Berliners breached the 12-ft.-high wall that had divided the communist East side of the city and the capitalist West side of the city since 1961. Olivia B. Waxman, Time, "'I Was Just a Man Who Sang a Song About Freedom': 30 Years Later, David Hasselhoff Looks Back on His Surprising Role in the Fall of the Berlin Wall," 7 Nov. 2019 The pressures of capitalist expansion abroad and rising disaffection at home further transformed liberal doctrine. Pankaj Mishra, The New Yorker, "Liberalism According to The Economist," 4 Nov. 2019 Within capitalist systems, money is the ultimate measure of worth. The Economist, "A scholar of inequality ponders the future of capitalism," 2 Nov. 2019

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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Time Traveler for capitalist

Time Traveler

The first known use of capitalist was in 1774

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Statistics for capitalist

Last Updated

24 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Capitalist.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 6 December 2019.

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More Definitions for capitalist


How to pronounce capitalist (audio)

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

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very cautious or careful

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