re·sil·ient | \ ri-ˈzil-yənt \

Definition of resilient 

: characterized or marked by resilience: such as

a : capable of withstanding shock without permanent deformation or rupture

b : tending to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change

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Other words from resilient

resiliently adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for resilient

elastic, resilient, springy, flexible, supple mean able to endure strain without being permanently injured. elastic implies the property of resisting deformation by stretching. an elastic waistband resilient implies the ability to recover shape quickly when the deforming force or pressure is removed. a resilient innersole springy stresses both the ease with which something yields to pressure and the quickness of its return to original shape. the cake is done when the top is springy flexible applies to something which may or may not be resilient or elastic but which can be bent or folded without breaking. flexible plastic tubing supple applies to something that can be readily bent, twisted, or folded without any sign of injury. supple leather

Examples of resilient in a Sentence

The tallow tree, an ornamental species introduced by Benjamin Franklin in 1772, can quickly grow to 10 metres and is resilient to many pests. New Scientist, 19-25 Aug. 2006 In this affecting and eloquent account of the Dew family members' attempts to come to terms with the homosexuality of the elder son … Stephen emerges as a remarkably resilient and self-aware young man. —Genevieve Stuttaford, Publishers Weekly, 18 Apr. 1994 Scientists are trying to figure out how the complex structure of such crystals and polymers and their interactions on the molecular level lead to resilient materials like sea shells, teeth and bones. —JoAnn Shroyer, Quark, Critters and Chaos, 1993 Old roses are tough and resilient; they may be a little loose and blowzy … but the fact remains, these bushes want to live. —Beverly Lowry, New York Times Book Review, 3 Dec. 1989 Hot-dipped nails have a resilient, thick zinc jacket that withstands more of the perils of a nail's life. —Jim Locke, The Apple Corps Guide to the Well-Built House, 1988 The local economy is remarkably resilient. after being dipped in liquid nitrogen, the rubber ball's normally resilient surface is as brittle as ceramic
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Recent Examples on the Web

Rakitic is a little flashier but no less resilient. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, "How the World Cup final between France and Croatia will be won," 13 July 2018 All students experience stress, losses, and setbacks and most young people are resilient. NBC News, "It's not 'snitching': Secret Service says students can help prevent gun violence," 11 July 2018 And try this, too: constantly remind yourself that just like America, the stock market is resilient. Nathan Bachrach,, "Simply Money: What to remind yourself when the stock market is stressing you out.," 3 July 2018 In addition, co-partisans appear to be resilient in returning to support after periods of bad news. Zack Beauchamp, Vox, "The fight over family separations proved how broken Trump’s America really is," 22 June 2018 The Seminoles, who have been resilient winning six elimination games during this NCAA tournament, are off to an ideal start in their first WCWS final round: 10 of the last 13 national champions have won the first game of the final series. Safid Deen,, "Florida State beats Washington 1-0, takes Game 1 of Women's College World Series," 5 June 2018 Harris County Judge Ed Emmett said Monday this funding along with a $2.5 billion bond proposal for flood-control projects that voters will be asked to approve in August will go a long way to making the Houston-area more flood resilient. Juan A. Lozano, The Seattle Times, "Funding will help finish Houston-area flood-control projects," 9 July 2018 Trudeau, as the summit's host, has placed climate and environmental issues atop his agenda, including a focus on ridding the world's oceans of plastic waste and making coastal communities more resilient to rising tides. Michelle Kosinski, CNN, "Trump unenthusiastically heads for contentious G7," 7 June 2018 In a food system like New York’s, where the vast majority of the food is brought into the city from great distances, nearly everyone is dependent on everyone else being resilient. Sean Patrick Cooper, The New Republic, "Is America Ready for the Next Superstorm?," 4 June 2018

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

1674, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for resilient

Latin resilient-, resiliens, present participle of resilire to jump back, recoil, from re- + salire to leap — more at sally

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Statistics for resilient

Last Updated

8 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for resilient

The first known use of resilient was in 1674

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More Definitions for resilient



English Language Learners Definition of resilient

: able to become strong, healthy, or successful again after something bad happens

: able to return to an original shape after being pulled, stretched, pressed, bent, etc.


re·sil·ient | \ -yənt \

Medical Definition of resilient 

: characterized or marked by resilience

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Comments on resilient

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


the setting in which something occurs

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