dra·​ma·​tize | \ ˈdra-mə-ˌtīz, ˈdrä- \
dramatized; dramatizing

Definition of dramatize

transitive verb

1 : to adapt (something, such as a novel) for theatrical presentation
2 : to present or represent in a dramatic manner

intransitive verb

1 : to be suitable for dramatization
2 : to behave dramatically

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Other Words from dramatize

dramatizable \ -​ˌtī-​zə-​bəl \ adjective

Examples of dramatize in a Sentence

The movie dramatizes her early life. The book is dramatized in a new play. I know I tend to dramatize things but it really was awful. She cited a series of statistics to dramatize the seriousness of the problem. This tragedy dramatizes the need for improvements in highway safety.
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Recent Examples on the Web

That project is the basis for History’s new show, which dramatizes some of the sightings reported to the Air Force. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "The History Channel’s scripted ‘Project Blue Book’ arrives later this year," 23 July 2018 The opening weekend, however, pulled in audiences of several generations, not just those who old enough to remember the 1985 Live Aid performance by Queen that the movie dramatizes. Erich Schwartzel, WSJ, "‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ Enjoys Ruling-Class Opening," 4 Nov. 2018 Lady Fancy Nails embellished manicures with dangling acrylic beads mimicking water droplets, an effect dramatized on the runway by the models who twirled their fingertips and blew kisses at the cameras. Laura Regensdorf, Vogue, "This Model-Activist and Amputee's Runway Walk Just Lit up the Chromat Show," 8 Sep. 2018 Visconti, a longtime member of the Italian Communist Party, was also one of the founders of neorealism, dramatizing the struggles of working-class Romans, Sicilian fisherman and migrants from the southern countryside to the factories of the north. New York Times, "How Luchino Visconti Made History Sing," 7 June 2018 Wolfe's actors are as theatrical as their self-dramatizing characters. Charles Mcnulty, latimes.com, "A revelatory Denzel Washington in 'The Iceman Cometh'," 10 May 2018 Murphy Brown reframed the conversation, dramatizing the aspirations of so many American women trying to reconcile the desire to have both a career and children. Joy Press, Time, "Murphy Brown Is the Feminist Hero We Needed in 1988 — And in 2018," 1 Mar. 2018 For Simpson, that has often meant dramatizing the ugliest parts of the social fabric by intentionally beautifying the people who bear its heaviest burdens. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, "Lorna Simpson Maps the Complex Galaxies of Black Women’s Hair," 10 June 2018 At the other extreme, the museum might have opted for the Renzo Piano solution: dramatize the gulf between old and new, usually with glass. Justin Davidson, Daily Intelligencer, "This Time, a Much More Promising Attempt to Fix the Frick," 13 Apr. 2018

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

1783, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Statistics for dramatize

Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for dramatize

The first known use of dramatize was in 1783

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More Definitions for dramatize



English Language Learners Definition of dramatize

: to make (a book, an event, etc.) into a play, movie, television show, etc.

: to make a situation seem more important or serious than it really is

: to show (something that might not be noticed) in a clear and effective way


dra·​ma·​tize | \ ˈdra-mə-ˌtīz, ˈdrä-\
dramatized; dramatizing

Kids Definition of dramatize

1 : to make into a play, movie, or other show The TV show dramatized the musician's life.
2 : to present in a way that attracts attention The accident dramatized the need for greater safety measures.

Other Words from dramatize

dramatization \ ˌdra-​mə-​tə-​ˈzā-​shən, ˌdrä-​ \ noun

More from Merriam-Webster on dramatize

Spanish Central: Translation of dramatize

Nglish: Translation of dramatize for Spanish Speakers

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