sea change

noun

Definition of sea change

1 archaic : a change brought about by the sea
2 : a marked change : transformation a sea change in public policy

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Did You Know?

In Shakespeare's The Tempest, a sea-change is a change brought about by sea: Full fathom five thy father lies ... / Nothing of him that doth fade / But doth suffer a sea-change. This meaning is the original one, but it's now archaic. Long after sea change had gained its figurative meaning, however, writers continued to allude to Shakespeare's literal one; Charles Dickens, Henry David Thoreau, and P.G. Wodehouse all used the term as an object of the verb suffer.

Examples of sea change in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But there’s been a sea change in the public perception of the granny panty. Shira Feder, Vox, "The rise of granny panties," 5 June 2019 To say it’s a sea change from their earlier work is to understate the case. Corey Seymour, Vogue, "Brexit, Bowie, Grenfell, and Burnout: 22 Minutes with the Lead Singer of Fat White Family," 27 Apr. 2019 Shutterstock Dealing with the real costs of free delivery As next-day increasing becomes just-in-time, a sea change in logistics and shopper expectations had created new challenges for the real estate industry. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "The 10 top emerging trends that will shape real estate in 2019," 10 Oct. 2018 Season nine marks a behind-the-scenes sea change as well, as longtime showrunner Scott M. Gimple has taken on a new position overseeing the greater Walking Dead franchise. Josh Wigler, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Walking Dead': Jon Bernthal to Return in Season 9," 18 June 2018 Leading the way in the industry are designers like Virgil Abloh and Alessandro Michele whose designs resonate with the real pioneers of this sea change, the millennials and Gen Z kids who embrace fluidity. Vogue, "A New Exhibition in Boston on Gender-Bending Fashion Is Also About Youthquakes, New and Old," 20 Mar. 2019 Hopefully, Regina King's speech is the first step in a sea change of more Hollywood actors making similar pledges in the year to come. Jennifer Lance, Glamour, "Regina King Vows to Produce Projects With '50% Women' at the Golden Globes," 6 Jan. 2019 Meanwhile, a sea change was taking place in U.S. politics. Matthew Bodner And Angela Charlton, Fox News, "Misfire: Maria Butina's strange route from Russia to US jail," 10 Sep. 2018 Kanaan says these computer language skills are vital for weathering the current sea change in battlefield analytics, big data, and artificial intelligence. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "The Air Force Will Teach Computer Coding Like a Foreign Langauge," 13 Sep. 2018

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

1612, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for sea change

Last Updated

12 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for sea change

The first known use of sea change was in 1612

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More Definitions for sea change

sea change

noun

English Language Learners Definition of sea change

: a big and sudden change

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More from Merriam-Webster on sea change

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sea change

Nglish: Translation of sea change for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sea change for Arabic Speakers

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