in·​flu·​en·​tial | \ ˌin-(ˌ)flü-ˈen(t)-shəl How to pronounce influential (audio) \

Definition of influential

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: exerting or possessing influence



Definition of influential (Entry 2 of 2)

: one who has great influence

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Other Words from influential


influentially \ ˌin-​(ˌ)flü-​ˈen(t)-​sh(ə-​)lē How to pronounce influentially (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for influential

Synonyms: Adjective

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Examples of influential in a Sentence

Adjective His theories have become more influential in recent years. My parents have been the most influential people in my life.
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Right to Life, which is strongly influential among GOP legislators, endorsed Cupp. Anna Staver, The Enquirer, "Former Justice Bob Cupp replaces Larry Householder as Ohio House speaker," 31 July 2020 While his father, who remains the company’s executive chairman, is influential in Republican politics, Murdoch and his wife have long been major donations to left-leaning causes and political candidates. Jeremy Barr, Washington Post, "James Murdoch resigns from News Corp board over ‘disagreements’ about editorial content," 31 July 2020 Two of those homers were influential in comeback wins; the other put his team in a perfect spot to compete for the lead. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Tigers observations: Two Miguel Cabrera homers not enough in 5-3 loss to Royals," 31 July 2020 Rounding out the list at number 10 is Nike’s Court Victory Tennis Skirt, an asymmetric white pleated mini skirt, which goes to show just how influential the tennis aesthetic is right now. Eliza Huber,, "Tennis Skirts, Marine Serre Masks & Harry Styles’ Viral Cardigan Are Summer’s Top Trends," 29 July 2020 Midfielder Lindsey Horan, who has been Thorns’ most influential player in the Challenge Cup, did not dress for Monday’s match amid a minor left hip injury. oregonlive, "Portland Thorns draw OL Reign, make path in NWSL Challenge Cup tougher," 14 July 2020 One of the most influential voices in celebrity gossip is a blogger and entertainment lawyer who goes by the pen name Enty. Kaitlyn Tiffany, The Atlantic, "How a Fake Baby Is Born," 13 July 2020 During the years that Neff wrote for him at Fox, Carlson has hosted one of the most influential shows on cable news. Oliver Darcy, CNN, "Tucker Carlson's top writer resigns after secretly posting racist and sexist remarks in online forum," 10 July 2020 Interfaith of The Woodlands, founded in 1973, is the largest and most influential charity in the township, composed of scores of local religious groups, churches, mosques, temples and other groups. Jeff Forward, Houston Chronicle, "Interfaith The Woodlands cancels annual gala, awards event," 10 July 2020

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


1570, in the meaning defined above


1831, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for influential

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The first known use of influential was in 1570

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Statistics for influential

Last Updated

6 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Influential.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for influential


How to pronounce influential (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of influential

: having the power to cause changes : having influence


in·​flu·​en·​tial | \ ˌin-flü-ˈen-shəl How to pronounce influential (audio) \

Kids Definition of influential

: having the power to cause change : having influence

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