in·​dus·​tri·​al | \ in-ˈdə-strē-əl How to pronounce industrial (audio) \

Definition of industrial

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of or relating to industry
2 : derived from human industry industrial wealth
3 : engaged in industry the industrial classes
4 : used in or developed for use in industry industrial diamonds also : heavy-duty an industrial zipper
5 : characterized by highly developed industries an industrial nation



Definition of industrial (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : one that is employed in industry
b : a company engaged in industrial production or service
2 : a stock or bond issued by an industrial corporation or enterprise

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Other Words from industrial


industrially \ in-​ˈdə-​strē-​ə-​lē How to pronounce industrially (audio) \ adverb

Examples of industrial in a Sentence


There are thousands of industrial uses for plastic.

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Located in an ancient industrial building, the converted loft features bohemian decor and an open living plan. Lauren Smith, House Beautiful, "This Rustic Parisian Loft Has the Most Epic Library," 26 Feb. 2019 Going into this second term in late 2017, the Chinese leader put Mr. Liu in charge of a wide swath of the economy—the financial system and the industrial sector—and the trade negotiations with Washington. Bob Davis, WSJ, "U.S. Bets on China’s Special Envoy in Trade Talks," 22 Feb. 2019 The brown, ankle-length boots seem to be a new pair for the duchess, who ditched her usual leather riding boots by Penelope Chilvers for the more industrial-looking pair. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kate Middleton Rocks Skinny Jeans and Combat Boots for a Community Garden Appearance," 15 Jan. 2019 Broadly speaking, epic fantasy feels most at home in a pre-industrial world, and doesn’t usually concern itself with the affairs of things like corporations or the ethics of capitalism that came with industrialization. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "Foundryside is a cyberpunk adventure wrapped in an epic fantasy novel," 23 Dec. 2018 Most commercial farms around here grow industrial crops like corn and soybeans, while the fruits and vegetables at the grocery stores are from California, Florida, or another part of the world. Sandy M. Fernandez, Woman's Day, "How Three Women Are Pioneering to End Hunger in the U.S.," 14 Nov. 2018 The flooding has punished Japan’s robust industrial sector as well. Austin Ramzy, New York Times, "Amid Japan’s Flood Devastation, Survivors Dig Out," 9 July 2018 Turkey, which was one of the Group of 20’s fastest-growing economies until the middle of last year, is beset by shrinking industrial output, rising unemployment and double-digit inflation. David Gauthier-villars, WSJ, "A Craze for Atatürk Gives New Cachet to Turkey’s Founding Father," 22 Feb. 2019 Kim later showed off her gift for Kanye, which included cooking him dinner in her crazy big, industrial kitchen. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "Here's How All of Your Favorite Celeb Couples Celebrated Valentine's Day," 15 Feb. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The Dow industrials rose 443.86 points, or 1.7%, to 25883.25 Friday, while the S&P 500 added 29.87, or 1.1%, to 2775.60. Corrie Driebusch, WSJ, "Nasdaq Exits Bear Market as Stocks Rally," 15 Feb. 2019 Photo: Ricardo Mazalan/Associated Press For the month, the S&P 500 rose 1.8%, the Dow industrials added 1.7% and the Nasdaq climbed 0.3%. Akane Otani, WSJ, "Investors on Edge After Rocky Month for Markets," 30 Nov. 2018 The Dow Jones industrials climbed 157.03 points, to 24527.27, after earlier rising as much as 458 points. Bob Davis, WSJ, "China Prepares Policy to Increase Access for Foreign Companies," 12 Dec. 2018 That leaves a lot of room for work in non-Equity stage productions, as well as film, television, commercials and industrials. Kelundra Smith, New York Times, "A Boom in Filming Gives Atlanta Stage Actors Room to Maneuver," 4 May 2018 The drop took about 100 points off the Dow industrials and pushed the S&P’s health-care sector down 3.4%. Corrie Driebusch And Riva Gold, WSJ, "Sharp Decline Puts Dow in Correction Territory," 14 Dec. 2018 The Dow Jones industrials slid 328 points or 1.3 percent to 24,253, its lowest close since early May. The S&P 500 index lost 37 points or 1.4 percent to 2,717, and the Nasdaq fell 161 points or 2.1 percent to 7,532. Marley Jay,, "When it comes to health insurance, small business owners have options," 25 June 2018 Yet investors have rewarded industrials lately after many manufacturers reported strong second-quarter earnings despite the threat of tariffs hurting global demand. Amrith Ramkumar, WSJ, "Rebound for Industrials Helps Stabilize U.S. Stocks," 14 Sep. 2018 After the gains of the past week, the S&P 500 is up 4.4% for the year, while the Dow industrials have risen 4.5% and the Nasdaq Composite has advanced 7.8%. Georgi Kantchev, WSJ, "Stocks, Oil Rise as Trade Tensions Ease, but Bonds Signal Anxiety," 3 Dec. 2018

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


1600, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1831, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Last Updated

13 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for industrial

The first known use of industrial was in 1600

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English Language Learners Definition of industrial

: of or relating to industry : of or relating to factories, the people who work in factories, or the things made in factories
: having a developed industry : having factories that actively make a product
: coming from or used in industry : made or used in factories also : stronger than most other products of its kind


in·​dus·​tri·​al | \ in-ˈdə-strē-əl How to pronounce industrial (audio) \

Kids Definition of industrial

1 : of, relating to, or engaged in industry industrial work
2 : having highly developed industries industrial nations

Other Words from industrial

industrially adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on industrial

Spanish Central: Translation of industrial

Nglish: Translation of industrial for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of industrial for Arabic Speakers

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