dra·​mat·​ic | \drə-ˈma-tik \

Definition of dramatic 

1 literature : of or relating to the drama a dramatic actor

2a : suitable to or characteristic of the drama a dramatic story a dramatic attempt to escape a dramatic comeback

b : striking in appearance or effect a dramatic pause

3 of an opera singer : having a powerful voice and a declamatory style — compare lyric

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Other Words from dramatic

dramatically \-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for dramatic

dramatic, theatrical, histrionic, melodramatic mean having a character or an effect like that of acted plays. dramatic applies to situations in life and literature that stir the imagination and emotions deeply. a dramatic meeting of world leaders theatrical implies a crude appeal through artificiality or exaggeration in gesture or vocal expression. a theatrical oration histrionic applies to tones, gestures, and motions and suggests a deliberate affectation or staginess. a histrionic show of grief melodramatic suggests an exaggerated emotionalism or an inappropriate theatricalism. made a melodramatic plea

Examples of dramatic in a Sentence

His parents noticed a dramatic change in his behavior. There was a dramatic increase in prices. The book tells the dramatic story of her battle with cancer. She made a dramatic entrance wearing a bright red dress. There was a dramatic pause before his big announcement. The painter used dramatic colors. They are members of the local dramatic society.
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Recent Examples on the Web

At the same time, a trio of dramatic technology shifts—electric cars, autonomous cars, and on-demand transportation services—threatens to upend the automotive industry. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "GM axes Volt, Cruze, and Impala for North America in cost-cutting move," 26 Nov. 2018 Bipolar disorder is a mental illness characterized by dramatic shifts in mood and behavior. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "14 Facts About Bipolar Disorder That Everyone Should Know," 27 Sep. 2018 The Defense Department is examining newly scientific tools, like genetic engineering, brain chemistry, and shrinking robotics, for even more dramatic enhancements. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "Short-Term Superhuman: If We Create Augmented Soldiers, Can We Turn Them Back?," 25 Sep. 2018 This dramatic shift comes on the heels of a year of significant changes for the 181 year old brand. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "The Tiffany & Co. Fifth Avenue Flagship Will Undergo a Massive Renovation," 16 Aug. 2018 The map of Charon shows an even more dramatic range of features, with even higher peaks countered by an abyss deeper than the lowest point on Earth. Meghan Bartels, Space.com, "Pluto and Charon Shine in Most Detailed Topographical Maps Ever," 12 July 2018 Belgium, meanwhile, produced one of the more dramatic victories of the World Cup, coming behind from two goals down against Japan to claim a 3-2 win in full time. Nihal Kolur, SI.com, "How to Watch Brazil vs. Belgium: World Cup Live Stream, TV Channel," 6 July 2018 Forgiveness for even low-level workers in the country’s multibillion-dollar drug industry would mark a dramatic shift from the militaristic approach that Mexico has long employed in its attempt to curb trafficking. Shelby Grad, latimes.com, "Essential California: The drug war implications of Mexico going to the polls," 30 June 2018 But a dramatic overall shift in class in rental offerings, resort-like amenities and prime location make these luxury pricepoints viable ones, Reed told me. Maggie Menderski, The Courier-Journal, "The new Main & Clay luxury apartments offer spectacular views," 27 June 2018

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

1589, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dramatic

see drama

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Statistics for dramatic

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dramatic

The first known use of dramatic was in 1589

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More Definitions for dramatic



English Language Learners Definition of dramatic

: sudden and extreme

: greatly affecting people's emotions

: attracting attention : causing people to carefully listen, look, etc.


dra·​mat·​ic | \drə-ˈma-tik \

Kids Definition of dramatic

1 : having to do with drama a dramatic actor

2 : attracting attention He made a dramatic entrance.

3 : sudden and extreme a dramatic change

Other Words from dramatic

dramatically \-​ti-​kə-​lē \ adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on dramatic

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dramatic

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dramatic

Spanish Central: Translation of dramatic

Nglish: Translation of dramatic for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dramatic for Arabic Speakers

Comments on dramatic

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