clas·​sic | \ˈkla-sik \

Definition of classic 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : serving as a standard of excellence : of recognized value classic literary works a classic case study on hysteria

b : traditional, enduring classic designs

c : characterized by simple tailored lines in fashion year after year a classic suit

2 : of or relating to the ancient Greeks and Romans or their culture : classical

3a : historically memorable a classic battle

b : noted because of special literary or historical associations Paris is the classic refuge of expatriates

4a : authentic, authoritative a classic study of eyewitness accounts

b : typical a classic example of chicanery a classic error

5 capitalized : of or relating to the period of highest development of Mesoamerican and especially Mayan culture about a.d. 300–900



Definition of classic (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a literary work of ancient Greece or Rome studied the classics in college

2a : a work of enduring excellence His manual of biology has become a classic among scientists. also : its author He had already become a classic many years before his death.

b : an authoritative source

3 : a typical or perfect example His march through the wilderness of Maine has been regarded as a classic of perseverance.

4 : a traditional event a football classic

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Examples of classic in a Sentence


She prefers classic furniture designs. It's a classic suit that won't go out of style. I like the car's classic contours. The battle was a classic example of poor planning.


That car is a classic. I like to read the classics. He teaches classics at the local university. She studied classics in college. an interest in the classics The football game is a Thanksgiving classic.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Yes, and was thinking Meghan looked very classic and very beautiful. Avril Graham, Town & Country, "Bella Hadid Opens Up About the One Thing She Wishes She Had More Time For," 12 June 2018 Tordini typically opts for more minimal, clean and classic looks, while Ambrosio prefers pieces that are bold and daring. Lindzi Scharf,, "Attico designers take inspiration from 'Grey Gardens' as they build on their 'modern vintage' approach," 12 July 2018 My favorite all-purpose option is Dijon mustard, which is milder than spicy brown or classic yellow but still packs a zesty punch that pairs well with the vinegar and cuts through oil. Becky Krystal, sacbee, "Shake it up: Lots of vinaigrette options," 10 July 2018 Each was a fan of the Kentuckian's sophisticated, classic and timeless style which Rogers brings to life in the multi-room exhibit. Kirby Adams, The Courier-Journal, "'Must-see' museum exhibit is in Louisville — and it features 'royalty'," 9 July 2018 MAYNARD The Rolling On The River Music Series presents singer/songwriter Marilyn Kirby and friends performing original and classic blues music from 12 to 2 p.m. on Saturday, July 14, on the sidewalk at The Boston Bean House, 102 Main St., "A trip to Neverland, voyage on a Yellow Submarine, and dream the Impossible Dream," 5 July 2018 The Caladium Festival will offer arts and crafts, wine tasting, a beer garden, food booths, entertainment and an antique and classic car show. Bonnie Gross,, "Local color: Lake Placid Caladium Festival," 3 July 2018 The cocktail program, which is heavy on classic and modern margaritas, is overseen by Christian Siglin. Pam Kragen,, "Casa Rústica restaurant opens in Carmel Valley," 3 July 2018 The 22nd annual Dream Cars for Kids' Dreams antique and classic car show was held on the grounds of the Albert J. Solnit Children's Center-North Campus on Father's Day, June 17. Annie Gentile, Courant Community, "Dream Cars Fund Kids' Dreams," 26 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Check out SI TV's newest additions: Movies The Longest Yard Adam Sandler stars as a prison inmate who forms a football team to challenge the prison guards in this all-time classic. Nihal Kolur,, "What's New on SI TV in July 2018? Raging Bull, Longest Yard Now Streaming," 3 July 2018 Back to basics To no one's surprise, Paramore sprinkled in the classics throughout the show. Sarah Bahr, Indianapolis Star, "5 ways Paramore mixed past and present at the Lawn," 2 July 2018 The Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat will also play in the classic. Jason Jones, sacbee, "De'Aaron Fox to join Giles, Bagley for summer league in Sacramento," 28 June 2018 The dinner-only restaurant, the sibling to Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill at Caesars, has 288 seats and hundreds of labels in its wine collection and barrel-aged cocktail classics. Michael Klein,, "New dining options at Atlantic City's casinos include Garces and Hard Rock," 27 June 2018 Gorcey spoke to Fox News about appearing in two cult classics. Stephanie Nolasco, Fox News, "Elizabeth Gorcey reflects on her time filming 'Footloose,' 'Teen Wolf'," 26 June 2018 The whole case will, in my opinion, remain immortal in the classics of crime as the supreme example of official incompetence and obstinacy. Sarah Weinman, The New Republic, "Arthur Conan Doyle, True Detective," 14 June 2018 Maren was the munchkin who handed Judy Garland's Dorothy a lollipop in the 1939 classic, said Marc Baum, who sits on the board of trustees for the International L. Frank Baum & All Things Oz Historical Foundation in Chittenango, New York. Alex Sundby And Christopher Brito, CBS News, "Jerry Maren, last surviving "Wizard of Oz" munchkin, dead at 98," 6 June 2018 His story is just one of many in the classic Over the Edge: Death in Grand Canyon. Anna Callaghan, Outside Online, "Must-Read Books about the Grand Canyon," 24 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'classic.' 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 classic


1597, in the meaning defined at sense 2


1684, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for classic


French or Latin; French classique, from Latin classicus of the highest class of Roman citizens, of the first rank, from classis — see class entry 1

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Statistics for classic

Last Updated

6 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for classic

The first known use of classic was in 1597

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More Definitions for classic



English Language Learners Definition of classic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

—used to say that something has come to be considered one of the best of its kind

—used to say that something is an example of excellence

—used to describe something that has been popular for a long time



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

: something that has been considered to be excellent for a long time

classics : the study of the literature, language, and culture of ancient Greece and Rome

: a traditional event


clas·​sic | \ˈkla-sik \

Kids Definition of classic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : serving as a model of the best of its kind It's a classic story for children.

2 : fashionable year after year a classic style

3 : of or relating to the ancient Greeks and Romans or their culture classic sculptures

4 : being typical of its kind a classic mistake



Kids Definition of classic (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a written work or author of ancient Greece or Rome

2 : a great work of art a classic of literature

3 : something long regarded as outstanding of its kind a classic car


clas·​sic | \ˈklas-ik \
variants: or classical \ -​i-​kəl \

Medical Definition of classic 

: standard or recognized especially because of great frequency or consistency of occurrence the classic triad of urethritis, conjunctivitis, and arthritis signaling Reiter's syndromeEmergency Medicine

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More from Merriam-Webster on classic

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for classic

Spanish Central: Translation of classic

Nglish: Translation of classic for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of classic for Arabic Speakers

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