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fan·​tas·​tic fan-ˈta-stik How to pronounce fantastic (audio)
variants or less commonly fantastical
: based on fantasy (see fantasy entry 1 sense 2) : not real
: conceived or seemingly conceived by unrestrained fancy
fantastic new space and nuclear weaponsJack Raymond
: so extreme as to challenge belief : unbelievable
a fantastic industrial complex of steel, coal, machine tools, and other heavy industriesM. S. Handler
broadly : exceedingly large or great
spent fantastic sums on his library
: marked by extravagant fantasy or extreme individuality : eccentric
fantastic works of art
fantastic : excellent, superlative
a fantastic meal
fantasticality noun
fantasticalness noun


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Choose the Right Synonym for fantastic

fantastic, bizarre, grotesque mean conceived, made, or carried out without adherence to truth or reality.

fantastic may connote extravagance in conception or ingenuity of decorative invention.

dreamed up fantastic rumors

bizarre applies to the sensationally strange and implies violence of contrast or incongruity of combination.

a bizarre medieval castle in the heart of a modern city

grotesque may apply to what is conventionally ugly but artistically effective or it may connote ludicrous awkwardness or incongruity often with sinister or tragic overtones.

grotesque statues on the cathedral
though grieving, she made a grotesque attempt at a smile

synonyms see in addition imaginary

Examples of fantastic in a Sentence

Adjective The train runs at fantastic speeds. a fantastic scheme for getting rich quick
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These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'fantastic.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



fantastic going back to Middle English fantastik "of imagination as a faculty, produced by the imagination, not real, unfounded, false, supernatural," borrowed from Middle French & Late Latin; Middle French fantastique, borrowed from Late Latin phantasticus "of the imagination, deceptive, imaginary," borrowed from Greek phantastikós "able to produce the appearance of something, resulting from the imagination," from phantast- (stem in nominal derivation corresponding to phantasía "appearance, image, imagination" and phantázein "to make visible, present to the eye or mind, (middle voice) place before one's mind, imagine") + -ikos -ic entry 1; fantastical going back to Middle English fantasticalle, from fantastik + -alle -al entry 1 — more at fantasy entry 1


derivative of fantastic entry 1

First Known Use


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1598, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of fantastic was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near fantastic

Cite this Entry

“Fantastic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


also fantastical
: produced by the imagination or like something produced by the imagination
a fantastic scheme
: extremely high or great
fantastic speeds
: excellent, great
a fantastic meal

More from Merriam-Webster on fantastic

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