crucial

adjective

cru·​cial ˈkrü-shəl How to pronounce crucial (audio)
1
a
: important, significant
… what use we make of them will be the crucial question.Stanley Kubrick
Vitamins are crucial for maintaining good health.
b
: important or essential as resolving a crisis : decisive
She played a crucial role in the negotiations.
c
: marked by final determination of a doubtful issue
the crucial game of a series
2
archaic : cruciform
Choose the Right Synonym for crucial

acute, critical, crucial mean of uncertain outcome.

acute stresses intensification of conditions leading to a culmination or breaking point.

an acute housing shortage

critical adds to acute implications of imminent change, of attendant suspense, and of decisiveness in the outcome.

the war has entered a critical phase

crucial suggests a dividing of the ways and often a test or trial involving the determination of a future course or direction.

a crucial vote

Examples of crucial in a Sentence

Vitamins are crucial for maintaining good health. It's crucial that we arrive before 8 o'clock. Teachers are crucial to the success of the school. She played a crucial role in the meeting.
Recent Examples on the Web Estate planning and ensuring adequate life and disability insurance coverage are crucial to protect their families’ financial well-being. Ebony Flake, Essence, 11 Apr. 2024 Still, finding solutions is crucial in order to set up the next generation of business leaders for success. Lina Ruiz, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 10 Apr. 2024 See all Example Sentences for crucial 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'crucial.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

French, from Latin cruc-, crux cross

First Known Use

1706, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of crucial was in 1706

Dictionary Entries Near crucial

Cite this Entry

“Crucial.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/crucial. Accessed 23 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

crucial

adjective
cru·​cial ˈkrü-shəl How to pronounce crucial (audio)
1
: being a final or very important test or decision : decisive
the crucial game of a series
2
: very important : significant
water is a crucial element in our weather
crucially
ˈkrüsh-(ə-)lē
adverb
Etymology

from French crucial "having the form of a cross, being or involving a crisis," from Latin cruc-, crux "cross, trouble, torture" — related to cross, crucify, crux

More from Merriam-Webster on crucial

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