cli·​mac·​tic | \ klī-ˈmak-tik How to pronounce climactic (audio) , 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 How to pronounce climactically (audio) , 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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Even after a seemingly climactic scene, where the main character is on the cusp of growing up, the film still gives him the chance to fail one more time and watches the repercussions. Jacob Kastrenakes, The Verge, "New trailers: Jessica Jones, Ad Astra, The Lion King, and more," 8 June 2019 Big Little Lies' climactic finale answered all of our questions — though by then, many of us guessed the victim was be Celeste Wright's (Nicole Kidman) abusive husband, Perry (Alexander Skarsgård). Elena Nicolaou,, "Wait, How Did Perry Die In Big Little Lies Again?," 8 June 2019 Even the climax, in which Mr. Carlsen wins the match in a high-speed 16th-game tie-breaker (50.Qh6+!!), is disappointingly anti-climactic. Brad Leithauser, WSJ, "‘The Grandmaster’ Review: The 64-Square Universe," 8 Nov. 2018 In winning best comedy album, Dave Chappelle’s acceptance speech was a little anti-climactic. Chris Payne, Billboard, "The 7 Best Speeches From the 2018 Grammy Awards: Anti-Trump Fervor, #MeToo Moments & More," 29 Jan. 2018 This is absolutely not to say that any version of a miscarriage—with symptoms, without symptoms, climactic, anticlimactic—is more or less traumatic than another. Nadine Jolie Courtney, SELF, "Everything I Thought I Knew About Miscarriages Changed When I Had Two ‘Silent’ Ones," 22 Apr. 2019 Finally, what really got folks upset was when Miguel tried to intervene in the middle of Randall and Kevin's climactic argument at the end of the episode. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'This Is Us' Fans Are Furious With Miguel After Watching the Latest Episode," 13 Mar. 2019 The dramatic arc builds persuasively to the climactic moments, shifting with increasing speed between scenes to the culminating revelation. Heidi Waleson, WSJ, "‘The Flood’ and ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ Reviews: Premieres in Pursuit of Reinvention," 11 Feb. 2019 What should have been a powerful, climactic moment was lost. Marie Claire, "'Outlander' Season 4 Finale Recap: 5 Biggest Takeaways," 28 Jan. 2019

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

22 Jun 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 How to pronounce climactic (audio) \

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

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