par·​a·​bol·​ic | \ ˌper-ə-ˈbä-lik How to pronounce parabolic (audio) , ˌpa-rə- \

Definition of parabolic

1 : expressed by or being a parable : allegorical
2 : of, having the form of, or relating to a parabola motion in a parabolic curve

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Other Words from parabolic

parabolically \ ˌper-​ə-​ˈbä-​li-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce parabolic (audio) , ˌpa-​rə-​ \ adverb

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The two distinct meanings of "parabolic" trace back to the development of Late Latin and New Latin. Late Latin is the Latin language used by writers in the third to sixth centuries. In that language, the word for "parable" was "parabola" - hence, the "parable" sense of "parabolic." New Latin refers to the Latin used since the end of the medieval period, especially in regard to scientific description and classification. In New Latin, "parabola" names the same geometrical curve as it does in English. Both meanings of "parabola" were drawn from the Greek word for "comparison": "parabolē."

Examples of parabolic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web To prepare for the flight, the Inspiration4 crew flew a Zero-G flight, an airplane that flies in parabolic arcs that create weightlessness for a few minutes at a time. Washington Post, 13 Sep. 2021 During the week of September 3 this reading was above 90.00, putting the stock into an inflating parabolic bubble formation. Richard Henry Suttmeier, Forbes, 16 Sep. 2021 There are just so few cars to buy that vehicle prices have gone parabolic. Mark Zandi For Cnn Business Perspectives, CNN, 8 Sep. 2021 At SKA-Mid 197 parabolic radio dishes will be built, each 50 feet/15 meters in diameter. Jamie Carter, Forbes, 2 July 2021 Using the parabolic fit, this gives a vertical acceleration of –11.54 m/s2. Rhett Allain, Wired, 13 Aug. 2021 But with meme stocks, the fundamental factors that apply to most other stocks don’t apply, and sudden parabolic gains can easily disappear. Dallas News, 25 July 2021 The plane flies in parabolic arcs to simulate zero gravity. Time, 4 Aug. 2021 In May this year, the fridge took 30 parabolic flights, each providing 20 seconds of simulated microgravity. Shi En Kim, Smithsonian Magazine, 28 July 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for parabolic

(sense 1) Middle English parabolik, borrowed from Late Latin parabolicus, borrowed from Greek parabolikós "figurative," from parabolḗ "comparison, parable" + -ikos -ic entry 1; (sense 2) borrowed from New Latin parabolicus, from parabola parabola + -icus -ic entry 1

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The first known use of parabolic was in the 15th century

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parabolic cylinder

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Last Updated

16 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Parabolic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Oct. 2021.

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