dra·​mat·​ic | \ drə-ˈma-tik How to pronounce dramatic (audio) \

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 \ drə-​ˈma-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce dramatically (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for dramatic



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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 The study found a dramatic increase in maternal deaths from the absence of childbirth interventions like antibiotics and clean birth environments. Karen Weintraub, USA TODAY, "250,000 babies may die indirectly due to COVID-19. Worst-case scenario: 1.2 million babies worldwide, study says," 30 June 2020 Despite the dramatic increase in active cases, Pasadena’s hospitals have not been overrun. John Delapp, Houston Chronicle, "Pasadena to close City Hall except for essential staff," 26 June 2020 The dramatic increase in complaints has also prompted warnings from the Department of Transportation. Washington Post, "Complaints about airline service have skyrocketed during the covid-19 pandemic," 26 June 2020 Their origin is unclear, but the dramatic increase has forced the Baptist Community Church to close Wednesday, after its pastor, Joshua Manning, contracted symptoms of the disease. Nicholas Rowan, Washington Examiner, "An 'attack of the devil': Coronavirus resurgence hits churches," 25 June 2020 But there are, of course, other explanations for the dramatic increase in early-summer fireworks. Kaitlyn Tiffany, The Atlantic, "Fireworks Are Booming in American Cities. Conspiracies Are Booming on Twitter.," 24 June 2020 One dramatic moment came when an alumnus who now serves as a lawyer for some of the tribes based in the Upper Peninsula addressed the group. John Wisely, Detroit Free Press, "Is the bell tolling for Native American mascots?," 22 June 2020 Still, the dramatic increase in COVID-19 patients has hospital administrators and public health officials keeping a close eye on capacity. Lauren Caruba, ExpressNews.com, "‘Staggering’ COVID-19 surge continues, with hundreds of new cases and rising hospitalizations," 18 June 2020 Health officials say that the dramatic change in behavior was necessary to slow the spread of coronavirus and prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed. Nigel Chiwaya, NBC News, "Analysis: Data from 15M phones shows some Americans are gathering at pre-pandemic levels," 11 June 2020

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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Time Traveler for dramatic

Time Traveler

The first known use of dramatic was in 1589

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Statistics for dramatic

Last Updated

4 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Dramatic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dramatic. Accessed 5 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for dramatic


How to pronounce dramatic (audio)

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 How to pronounce dramatic (audio) \

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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