revolutionary

adjective
rev·​o·​lu·​tion·​ary | \ ˌre-və-ˈlü-shə-ˌner-ē How to pronounce revolutionary (audio) \

Definition of revolutionary

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : of, relating to, or constituting a revolution revolutionary war
b : tending to or promoting revolution
c : constituting or bringing about a major or fundamental change a revolutionary new product
2 capitalized : of or relating to the American Revolution or to the period in which it occurred

revolutionary

noun
plural revolutionaries

Definition of revolutionary (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : one engaged in a revolution
2 : an advocate or adherent of revolutionary doctrines

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Other Words from revolutionary

Adjective

revolutionarily \ ˌre-​və-​ˌlü-​shə-​ˈner-​ə-​lē How to pronounce revolutionarily (audio) \ adverb
revolutionariness \ ˌre-​və-​ˈlü-​shə-​ˌner-​ē-​nəs How to pronounce revolutionariness (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for revolutionary

Synonyms: Adjective

extreme, extremist, fanatic (or fanatical), rabid, radical, revolutionist, ultra

Synonyms: Noun

crazy, extremist, radical, revolutionist

Antonyms: Adjective

middle-of-the-road, nonrevolutionary, unrevolutionary

Antonyms: Noun

middle-of-the-roader, moderate

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Examples of revolutionary in a Sentence

Adjective

a candidate with a lot of crazy, revolutionary ideas that no one seems to be going for revolutionary forces that were soundly defeated before reaching the capital

Noun

after the collapse of the Russian monarchy, the moderate socialists briefly governed until being overthrown by the Bolshevik revolutionaries at first the government was not worried about this small band of unarmed revolutionaries
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Namely, who are these revolutionary ideas really aiming to benefit? Cady Drell, Marie Claire, "Elizabeth Holmes Is a Tragic Figure," 18 Mar. 2019 The school ignited a larger revolutionary social and political movement, making the case for streamlining ornate, frivolous design and ramping up mass production. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "Touring Germany’s Most Festive Christmas Markets," 18 Dec. 2018 So there's no ultra-wide or telephoto lens on the Nokia 9, and in fact, none of the cameras are particularly revolutionary on their own. Michael Simon, PCWorld, "Nokia 9 PureView hands-on: All of the cameras and none of the gimmicks," 24 Feb. 2019 As guests took their velvety red seats at the Centro de Bellas Artes Luis A. Ferré, there was a hum of revolutionary fervor for Miranda and the cast. Lauren Sanchez, Vogue, "Lin-Manuel Miranda Received a Standing Ovation at Hamilton’s Opening Night in Puerto Rico," 14 Jan. 2019 In particular, Princess Diana's choice to shake hands with AIDS patients was revolutionary in helping to fight the stigma of the disease in the early '90s. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "The Reason Meghan Markle Holds Her Gloves But Doesn't Actually Wear Them," 2 Feb. 2019 The fact that the women of ZAN are openly talking about them on national television is revolutionary. Kiana Hayeri, Glamour, "A Look Inside the First All-Female TV News Station In Afghanistan," 11 Dec. 2018 The Palladinos revel in the quietly revolutionary, whether tackling the surprisingly chipper aftermath of Lorelai Gilmore's teen pregnancy, or the boys' club of 1950s comedy. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel," 9 Dec. 2018 More than a century ago, Sears, Roebuck & Co. sent and shipped entire home kits across the country, a then-revolutionary service that would impact not just retailing, but home design and construction. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "How Sears Kit Homes changed housing," 16 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In November 1910, Mexico was plunged into a near decade-long war that pitted the federal government, run by dictator Porfirio Díaz Mori, against thousands of revolutionaries from varying factions. Teen Vogue, "The Real History of Las Soldaderas, the Women Who Made the Mexican Revolution Possible," 12 Mar. 2019 In one of the film’s early chase sequences, a young revolutionary named Hester (Hera Hilmar) is pursued through one of these smaller cities as it’s dismantled around her. Bryan Bishop, The Verge, "How Weta Digital created the steampunk world of Mortal Engines," 21 Dec. 2018 These are 2018’s biggest Instagram influencers: the women of the congressional freshmen class, who are using the platform not just like millennials (which many of them are) but as revolutionaries. Bridget Read, Vogue, "2018’s Biggest Instagram Influencers Are These Congressional Freshmen Women," 21 Nov. 2018 Or maybe these women think of themselves as revolutionaries—even feminists—and have told themselves, as people have throughout history, that violence toward a greater good is acceptable. Nadia Murad, Glamour, "Nadia Murad Escaped Sexual Slavery at the Hands of ISIS. This Is Her Story.," 5 Oct. 2018 Rodgers and Hammerstein were unlikely revolutionaries. The Economist, "The great second act of Rodgers and Hammerstein," 15 Mar. 2018 Le Grand K was created (along with the rest of the metric system) during the French Revolution when scientists and revolutionaries were united in their desire to remake the world. James Vincent, The Verge, "How and why we redefined the kilogram," 18 Dec. 2018 With historical fiction, particularly an era so flush with royals and revolutionaries, there is a danger in getting lost in details and shortchanging character development. Mary Cadden, USA TODAY, "Empress Maria heads juicy Russian cast in historical novel about the Romanovs," 12 July 2018 John Brown, the abolitionist revolutionary, was convicted of treason against the state of Virginia on grounds of levying war after his raid on Harpers Ferry. Dylan Matthews, Vox, "Michael Flynn’s judge suggested he might be guilty of treason. He’s not.," 18 Dec. 2018

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

Adjective

1718, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1850, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for revolutionary

Last Updated

4 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for revolutionary

The first known use of revolutionary was in 1718

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More Definitions for revolutionary

revolutionary

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of revolutionary

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: relating to, involving, or supporting a political revolution
: causing or relating to a great or complete change

revolutionary

noun

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

: someone who leads, joins, or wants a revolution

revolutionary

adjective
rev·​o·​lu·​tion·​ary | \ ˌre-və-ˈlü-shə-ˌner-ē How to pronounce revolutionary (audio) \

Kids Definition of revolutionary

1 : relating to or involving rebellion against a ruler or government revolutionary leaders
2 : being or bringing about a big or important change a revolutionary invention
3 capitalized : of or relating to the American Revolution

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