in·​flam·​ma·​to·​ry | \ in-ˈfla-mə-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce inflammatory (audio) \

Definition of inflammatory

1 : tending to excite anger, disorder, or tumult : seditious
2 : tending to inflame or excite the senses
3 : accompanied by or tending to cause inflammation

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Other Words from inflammatory

inflammatorily \ in-​ˌfla-​mə-​ˈtȯr-​ə-​lē How to pronounce inflammatorily (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for inflammatory


incendiary, seditious

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Examples of inflammatory in a Sentence

She had an acute inflammatory reaction to the drug. He incited the mob with an inflammatory speech.

Recent Examples on the Web

Lugar died April 28 in Annandale, Virginia, from complications of chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, a neurological disorder. Chris Sikich, Indianapolis Star, "Here is when former Sen. Richard Lugar will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery," 12 July 2019 Choose among salads, casseroles, whole fish, pasta, roasted meats and vegetables, global dishes, smoked meats and vegetables, desserts, vegan and anti-inflammatory options. Melissa Yeager, azcentral, "Ready to chow down? Here are the 5 cheapest buffets on the Las Vegas Strip," 3 July 2019 AbbVie is hunting for new sources of sales as the patent protection on Humira, its bestselling inflammatory treatment, will expire in America in 2023. The Economist, "Business this week," 29 June 2019 Recall Mao’s inflammatory speeches on the ability of hundreds of millions of Chinese people to absorb a nuclear war with any adversary, and consider the lines, below, that played across Chinese national media in 2013. Jonathan D. T. Ward, National Review, "China and the Major Powers," 25 June 2019 As for patients who experience improvement when treated with long courses of antibiotics, Novak believes this is because many antibiotics also have an anti-inflammatory effect. Linda Carroll, NBC News, "Possible clue to Lyme arthritis found in patients' inflamed joints," 18 June 2019 There is also limited evidence that topical niacinamide can help repair the function of the stratum corneum, the protective outer layer of skin, which may add to its anti-inflammatory effects. A.a. Newton, SELF, "Here’s What Niacinamide Can—and Can’t—Do for Your Skin," 8 May 2019 In addition to its anti-inflammatory effects, CBD appears to decrease production of oil that clogs pores and help boost cell turnover, which encourages youthful skin and prevents fine lines and acne. The Editors, Marie Claire, "10 Health Issues CBD Could Solve," 17 Apr. 2019 The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of cherries protect against muscle damage and accelerate recovery, Nalder says. Sara Angle, Outside Online, "Athletes, Stock Up on This Powerhouse Summer Produce," 22 June 2018

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

circa 1711, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for inflammatory

Last Updated

16 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for inflammatory

The first known use of inflammatory was circa 1711

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More Definitions for inflammatory



English Language Learners Definition of inflammatory

medical : causing or having inflammation
: causing anger


in·​flam·​ma·​to·​ry | \ in-ˈfla-mə-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce inflammatory (audio) \

Kids Definition of inflammatory

1 : tending to excite anger or disorder an inflammatory speech
2 : causing or having inflammation an inflammatory disease


in·​flam·​ma·​to·​ry | \ in-ˈflam-ə-ˌtōr-ē, -ˌtȯr- How to pronounce inflammatory (audio) \

Medical Definition of inflammatory

: accompanied by or tending to cause inflammation inflammatory diseases

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in·​flam·​ma·​to·​ry | \ in-ˈfla-mə-ˌtōr-ē\

Legal Definition of inflammatory

: tending to cause anger, animosity, or indignation the use of an alias by a defendant is…almost always inflammatory— F. D. Doucette

Note: Evidence, and especially photographic evidence, may be deemed inadmissible if its inflammatory nature seriously outweighs its probative value or relevance. The mere fact that evidence is graphic or gruesome, however, is not enough to render it inadmissible.

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Comments on inflammatory

What made you want to look up inflammatory? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


an act or instance of editing or removing

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