progressive

adjective
pro·​gres·​sive | \ prə-ˈgre-siv How to pronounce progressive (audio) \

Definition of progressive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : of, relating to, or characterized by progress
b : making use of or interested in new ideas, findings, or opportunities
c : of, relating to, or constituting an educational theory marked by emphasis on the individual child, informality of classroom procedure, and encouragement of self-expression
2 : of, relating to, or characterized by progression
3 : moving forward or onward : advancing
4a : increasing in extent or severity a progressive disease
b : increasing in rate as the base increases a progressive tax
5 often capitalized : of or relating to political Progressives
6 : of, relating to, or constituting a verb form that expresses action or state in progress at the time of speaking or a time spoken of
7 : of, relating to, or being a multifocal lens with a gradual transition between focal lengths progressive bifocals
8 : or, relating to, or using a method of video scanning (as for television or a computer monitor) in which the horizontal lines of each frame are drawn successively from top to bottom — compare interlaced

progressive

noun

Definition of progressive (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : one that is progressive
b : one believing in moderate political change and especially social improvement by governmental action
2 capitalized : a member of any of various U.S. political parties: such as
a : a member of a predominantly agrarian minor party that around 1912 split off from the Republicans specifically : bull moose
b : a follower of Robert M. La Follette in the presidential campaign of 1924
c : a follower of Henry A. Wallace in the presidential campaign of 1948

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Other Words from progressive

Adjective

progressively adverb
progressiveness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for progressive

Synonyms: Adjective

advanced, developed, evolved, forward, high, higher, improved, late, refined

Antonyms: Adjective

backward, low, lower, nonprogressive, primitive, retarded, rude, rudimentary, undeveloped

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Examples of progressive in a Sentence

Adjective

the progressive movements of the hands of a clock progressive forms of animal life

Noun

Believe” is never used in the progressive.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Rainfall is a lesser threat due to the storm's progressive movement to the north. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "Hurricane Michael is a rare, but not unprecedented, October storm," 8 Oct. 2018 Rauner has regularly drawn criticism from conservatives for supporting other progressive causes. Morgan Greene, chicagotribune.com, "Rauner officiates gay wedding, social conservatives object," 12 July 2018 While the party had made progressive candidate Mandelman its No. Matier & Ross, SFChronicle.com, "Former party chair John Burton says SF Democrats played dirty against Sheehy," 2 July 2018 The unions’ ability to spend on progressive causes and candidates was already diminishing. Noam Scheiber, New York Times, "Supreme Court Labor Decision Wasn’t Just a Loss for Unions," 1 July 2018 In subsequent years, Ednah became a powerful voice in progressive movements. Annie Gentile, Courant Community, "Art Gallery Dedicated At Cheney Homestead," 21 June 2018 Brochin touts his own high rankings from groups that advance progressive causes, such as the Maryland League of Conservation Voters (92 percent lifetime score) and NARAL Pro-Choice Maryland (B grade and an endorsement). Pamela Wood, baltimoresun.com, "Democrat Jim Brochin says his run for Baltimore County executive touts 'people's message'," 8 June 2018 New York City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer and state Sen. Mike Gianaris helped lead a group of politicians, progressive organizations and unions in opposing the bargain that New York City and the state struck with Amazon in November. Katie Honan, WSJ, "Queens Politicians Feel the Heat Over Doomed Amazon Deal," 20 Feb. 2019 The New York Times uncovered discrimination allegations at other progressive and feminist-leaning organizations as well, including Mehri & Skalet, a law firm that, ironically, is suing Walmart for pregnancy discrimination. Anna North, Vox, "Planned Parenthood is facing criticism for its treatment of pregnant workers," 21 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

More and more candidates are mothers of young children, veterans, and progressives in traditionally Republican strongholds. Jill Filipovic, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Future Is Female in the Midterm Elections," 4 Oct. 2018 The result was a major disappointment to Texas Democrats and many progressives nationally, who saw a rare opportunity with O’Rourke — a third-term lawmaker from El Paso, a largely remote and isolated district in Texas. Stavros Agorakis, Vox, "“I’m so fucking proud of you guys”: watch Beto O’Rourke’s emotional concession speech," 7 Nov. 2018 In particular, there aren’t too many progressives who are currently in leadership roles. Kayla Webley Adler, Marie Claire, "Meet Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister of New Zealand," 23 July 2018 Kenney came under fire from progressives last week after police destroyed the anti-ICE camp in Center City. Holly Otterbein, Philly.com, "Mayor Kenney met with immigrant advocates, 'abolish ICE' protesters Monday," 9 July 2018 To be sure, many progressives still opposed certain rules President George W. Bush had put in place, but these new rules ameliorated their concerns, while also drawing the support of conservatives. Melissa Rogers, Washington Post, "President Trump just unveiled a new White House ‘faith’ office. It actually weakens religious freedom.," 14 May 2018 But too many progressives thought Lamb was insufficiently liberal to celebrate. Peter St. Onge - Associate Editor, Observer Editorial Board, charlotteobserver, "How Democrats can ruin the blue wave, in three simple steps | Charlotte Observer," 2 May 2018 Under the helpful hands of the state’s white progressives, Lewis believed, black North Carolinians would take childlike steps forward. Longreads, "Nell Battle Lewis, Storyteller for Jim Crow," 25 May 2018 This coming from the same urban progressives that voted to increase property taxes less than a week into this term. Jason Williams, Cincinnati.com, "PX column: Hey Cincinnati, here's another team of five to direct your anger toward," 19 Mar. 2018

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

Noun

1844, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Last Updated

12 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for progressive

The first known use of progressive was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for progressive

progressive

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of progressive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: moving forward
: happening or developing gradually over a period of time
: using or interested in new or modern ideas especially in politics and education

progressive

noun

English Language Learners Definition of progressive (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person who favors new or modern ideas especially in politics and education

progressive

adjective
pro·​gres·​sive | \ prə-ˈgre-siv How to pronounce progressive (audio) \

Kids Definition of progressive

1 : of, relating to, or showing advancement a progressive city
2 : taking place gradually or step by step a progressive disease
3 : favoring gradual political change and social improvement by action of the government

Other Words from progressive

progressively adverb

progressive

adjective
pro·​gres·​sive | \ prə-ˈgres-iv How to pronounce progressive (audio) \

Medical Definition of progressive

1 : increasing in extent or severity a progressive disease
2 : of, relating to, or being a multifocal lens with a gradual transition between focal lengths progressive bifocals

Other Words from progressive

progressively adverb

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progressive

adjective
pro·​gres·​sive

Legal Definition of progressive

: increasing in rate as the base increases a progressive tax

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