trop·​i·​cal | \ for sense 1 ˈträ-pi-kəl How to pronounce tropical (audio) , for sense 2 ˈtrō- also ˈträ- \

Definition of tropical

1a : of, relating to, occurring in, or suitable for use in the tropics tropical forests a tropical disease
b : of, being, or characteristic of a region or climate that is frost-free with temperatures high enough to support year-round plant growth given sufficient moisture tropical Florida
2 [Latin tropicus, from Greek tropikos, from tropos trope] : figurative sense 2

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Other Words from tropical

tropically \ ˈträ-​pi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce tropically (audio) , ˈtrō-​ \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for tropical



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Examples of tropical in a Sentence

wanted to escape winter and visit some tropical location where freezing to death would not be a possibility an author given to high-flown tropical phrasings and convoluted symbology
Recent Examples on the Web According to a letter published last year in Nature, overall tree cover increased by about 7 percent between 1982 and 2016, with losses in tropical regions offset by gains elsewhere. Isabella Kaminski, Wired, "We Might Not Be Planting the Right Kinds of Forests," 25 Dec. 2019 Also note coconut water usually comes in drink containers that have been transported from tropical regions such as Vietnam, which isn’t great for the environment—again, tap water wins in this respect. Alexandra Hansen, Quartzy, "The health benefits of coconut water have been greatly overstated," 5 Nov. 2019 At the epicenter of the trade are biodiverse tropical regions including South America, South East Asia and Central and Southeast Africa. Claire Bugos, Smithsonian, "New Report Finds at Least One in Five Terrestrial Vertebrate Species Are Traded Globally," 7 Oct. 2019 It has also been blamed for coral bleaching, a serious and growing problem in tropical regions. Peter Fimrite,, "UN climate panel finds growing risks to on oceans, glacial regions," 25 Sep. 2019 On Saturday afternoon, Lorena’s tropical force winds extended outward up to 10 miles (20 kilometers) to the north and east of its center. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Lorena spares Los Cabos, heads up coast of Mexico’s Baja," 21 Sep. 2019 The official said the statement called out Birmingham's tweet because one NOAA hurricane forecast showed a 5 to 20 percent chance of tropical-storm-force winds in a small part of Alabama. oregonlive, "National Weather Service staff told not to contradict Trump," 9 Sep. 2019 Nestled in the middle of the shores on Villa Beach, Paradise Beach Hotel offers an intimate beach accommodation for your tropical getaway. Anquanette Gaspard, Essence, "Get Lost: 72 Hours in St. Vincent," 29 July 2019 Illness occurs most often in tropical and subtropical regions. Lillian Reed,, "What is Cyclospora? Maryland health department investigating rise in infection," 26 July 2019

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

1671, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for tropical

Time Traveler

The first known use of tropical was in 1671

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Statistics for tropical

Last Updated

7 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Tropical.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 19 January 2020.

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More Definitions for tropical


How to pronounce tropical (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of tropical

: of, relating to, occurring in, or used in the tropics


trop·​i·​cal | \ ˈträ-pi-kəl How to pronounce tropical (audio) \

Kids Definition of tropical

: of or occurring in the tropics tropical fruit a tropical island

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