dra·​ma | \ˈdrä-mə, ˈdra- \

Definition of drama 

1a literature : a composition (see composition sense 5a) in verse or prose intended to portray life or character or to tell a story usually involving conflicts and emotions through action and dialogue and typically designed for theatrical performance : play — compare closet drama

b : a movie or television production with characteristics (such as conflict) of a serious play broadly : a play, movie, or television production with a serious tone or subject a police drama

2 literature : dramatic art, literature, or affairs English drama

3a : a state, situation, or series of events involving interesting or intense conflict of forces the drama of the past week dealing with some family drama

b : dramatic state, effect, or quality the drama of the courtroom proceedings

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Examples of drama in a Sentence

He is reading an ancient Greek drama. I prefer drama to comedy. His interest in drama began at a very young age. She studied drama in college. the dramas of teenage life She watched the drama unfold as they began screaming at each other. a competition full of drama the drama of the courtroom proceedings
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Recent Examples on the Web

Sandra Oh made Emmy history this year as the first Asian woman nominated as outstanding lead actor in a drama series, thanks to her role in BBC America's Killing Eve. Julyssa Lopez, Glamour, "Sandra Oh Brought Her Parents to the Emmy Awards, and Twitter Is Obsessed," 18 Sep. 2018 The company has already confirmed some of the programming, like a drama series based on Isaac Asimov's Foundation series of novels. Samuel Axon, Ars Technica, "Apple’s September 12, 2018 event: What we expect to be “gathering round” for," 9 Sep. 2018 Color Binge is full of drama with its monochromatic hues ranging from teal to deep navy. Monique Valeris, ELLE Decor, "Behr Paint Announces Its 2019 Color of the Year, and You'll Actually Want to Try It," 23 Aug. 2018 On Sunday, Deadline reported that Netflix's announcement Spencer that will be playing Madam C.J. Walker in a new drama series based on the black beauty mogul's life. Emily Wang, Allure, "Octavia Spencer to Play Legendary Beauty Entrepreneur Madam C.J. Walker in New Netflix Series," 30 July 2018 On Sunday, Deadline reported that Netflix has announced Spencer will be playing Madam C.J. Walker in a new drama series based on the black cosmetics mogul's life. Emily Wang, Teen Vogue, "Octavia Spencer Will Play Black Hair Care Mogul Madam C.J. Walker in a New Netflix Series," 30 July 2018 The half-hour drama series is based on the book of the same name by Stephanie Danler. Joe Otterson, chicagotribune.com, "'Sweetbitter' renewed for Season 2 at Starz," 13 July 2018 Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale, which won outstanding drama series in 2017 upon its debut, claimed another 20 nominations, including acting nods for its star, Elisabeth Moss, and its supporting actors. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "Emmy Nominations 2018: Netflix Takes Over," 12 July 2018 The Handmaid’s Tale,’’ last year’s top drama series. Lynn Elber, BostonGlobe.com, "‘Game of Thrones’ earns a leading 22 Emmy Award nominations," 12 July 2018

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

1515, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for drama

Late Latin dramat-, drama, from Greek, deed, drama, from dran to do, act

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Statistics for drama

Last Updated

6 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for drama

The first known use of drama was in 1515

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English Language Learners Definition of drama

: a piece of writing that tells a story and is performed on a stage

: a play, movie, television show, or radio show that is about a serious subject and is not meant to make the audience laugh

: the art or activity of performing a role in a play, show, etc.


dra·​ma | \ˈdrä-mə, ˈdra-\

Kids Definition of drama

1 : a written work that tells a story through action and speech and is acted out : a usually serious play, movie, or television production

2 : the art or profession of creating or putting on plays

3 : an exciting or emotional situation or event Reporters told of the drama occurring in the courtroom.

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More from Merriam-Webster on drama

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with drama

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for drama

Spanish Central: Translation of drama

Nglish: Translation of drama for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of drama for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about drama

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