cli·​mac·​tic | \ klī-ˈmak-tik, klə-\

Definition of climactic

: of, relating to, or constituting a climax the film's climactic scene

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Other Words from climactic

climactically \ klī-​ˈmak-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē , klə-​ \ adverb

Synonyms for climactic


apocalyptic (also apocalyptical), climacteric

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Examples of climactic in a Sentence

At the climactic moment, the main character of the novel finds herself face to face with the thief. the movie's climactic chase scene

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History, after all, is written by the winners — which Richard, in the climactic battle at Bosworth Field, was not. Joel Brown,, "Capturing the villainy of Richard III, from the inside out," 12 July 2018 Oklahoma trailed, 31-10, at halftime and scored 10 points unanswered in the third quarter to create the outside possibility of a climactic finish. Brian Costa, WSJ, "Alabama Beats Oklahoma, Will Face Clemson for College Football National Title," 30 Dec. 2018 Additions to the story include romance and a climactic character death. Aja Romano, Vox, "Netflix’s new Watership Down proves the beloved children’s classic was a horror story all along," 30 Dec. 2018 French tries, but the climactic revelations here inevitably seem too little, too late. Maureen Corrigan, The Seattle Times, "Fans of Tana French are in for a surprise with ‘The Witch Elm’," 23 Oct. 2018 The director also revealed that the climactic football scene was almost totally different. Claire Dodson, Teen Vogue, "Noah Centineo Went Off Script During a Scene in "Sierra Burgess Is a Loser"," 17 Sep. 2018 In the same climactic closing montage, Camille discovers from John Keene that Amma used to play in the hut with Natalie and Ann, which—if Willis’s theory is correct—puts her in imminent danger. Emma Dibdin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Sharp Objects Episode 4: Something's Rotten in Wind Gap," 30 July 2018 Some of this is played for gruesome comedy, especially in the extended climactic showdown. Coralie Fargeat, New York Times, "Review: In ‘Revenge,’ the Trophy Turns Hunter," 9 May 2018 The latter takes the former on a whirlwind, glamorous tour of New York City that also includes a rather climactic detour to the Thanksgiving table of an estranged family member. Vogue, "13 Movies You Totally Forgot Were Set on Thanksgiving," 22 Nov. 2018

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

1747, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for climactic

Last Updated

19 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for climactic

The first known use of climactic was in 1747

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More Definitions for climactic



English Language Learners Definition of climactic

: most exciting and important : forming a climax


cli·​mac·​tic | \ klī-ˈmak-tik \

Medical Definition of climactic

: of, relating to, or constituting a climax

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More from Merriam-Webster on climactic

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with climactic

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for climactic

Nglish: Translation of climactic for Spanish Speakers

Comments on climactic

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


tremendous in size, volume, or degree

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