reactionary

adjective
re·​ac·​tion·​ary | \ rē-ˈak-shə-ˌner-ē How to pronounce reactionary (audio) \

Definition of reactionary

: relating to, marked by, or favoring reaction especially : ultraconservative in politics

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Other Words from reactionary

reactionary noun
reactionaryism \ rē-​ˈak-​shə-​ˌner-​ē-​ˌi-​zəm How to pronounce reactionaryism (audio) \ noun

Examples of reactionary in a Sentence

reactionary guardians of proper English usage invariably regard every new coinage that comes along as a nonword

Recent Examples on the Web

Takes Responding to last week’s study of white supremacists on YouTube, Ezra Klein says the video site is the key to understanding the future of the reactionary movement that is now ascendant in the United States. Casey Newton, The Verge, "The case that Russia is winning the cyberwar," 25 Sep. 2018 Rather than the noisy, reactionary bundle of bodies that the choir has often been reduced to, the choir here creates a real sense of community. Crystal Paul, The Seattle Times, "A brilliant cast breaks through stereotypes in Seattle Opera’s ‘Porgy and Bess’," 14 Aug. 2018 Right now, in the face of America’s reactionary narrow-mindedness, the work’s insistent cross-cultural heterogeneity feels joyfully subversive. Christopher Knight, latimes.com, "'Made in L.A. 2018': Why the Hammer biennial is the right show for disturbing times," 5 June 2018 The official Twitter account for the Netflix series even got in on the excitement, replying to fans with reactionary pictures and gifs. De Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, "Netflix Releases "Stranger Things 3" Teaser," 10 Dec. 2018 But Applegate also sees the project as an opportunity to shift from a reactionary approach to city management to a more informed, forward-thinking model. Emily Strasser, Curbed, "A secret city opens up," 8 Aug. 2018 Too stuff and his reactionary, cultural warrior supporters come into this space too. Fox News, "McConnell on marshalling the votes to confirm Kavanaugh," 7 Oct. 2018 Putin grew increasingly enamored of reactionary social theories portraying traditional, conservative, Christian Europe as pitted in a civilizational struggle against both decadent liberalism and radical Islam. Jonathan Chait, Daily Intelligencer, "Will Trump Be Meeting With His Counterpart — Or His Handler?," 8 July 2018 But a few good votes that are close to my heart do not blind my eyes to a fundamentally reactionary record. Chicago Tribune Staff, chicagotribune.com, "Morning Spin: Emanuel says departing Supreme Court Justice Kennedy not 'a modern-day King Solomon'," 6 July 2018

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

1815, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for reactionary

Last Updated

17 May 2019

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Time Traveler for reactionary

The first known use of reactionary was in 1815

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