conservative

adjective
con·​ser·​va·​tive | \ kən-ˈsər-və-tiv How to pronounce conservative (audio) \

Definition of conservative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : of or relating to a philosophy of conservatism
b Conservative : of or constituting a political party professing the principles of conservatism: such as
(1) : of or constituting a party of the United Kingdom advocating support of established institutions
2a : tending or disposed to maintain existing views, conditions, or institutions : traditional conservative policies
b : marked by moderation or caution a conservative estimate
c : marked by or relating to traditional norms of taste, elegance, style, or manners a conservative suit a conservative architectural style
3 Conservative : of, relating to, or practicing Conservative Judaism

conservative

noun

Definition of conservative (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : an adherent or advocate of political conservatism
b Conservative : a member or supporter of a conservative political party
2a : one who adheres to traditional methods or views
b : a cautious or discreet person

Other Words from conservative

Adjective

conservatively adverb
conservativeness noun

Examples of conservative in a Sentence

Adjective She is a liberal Democrat who married a conservative Republican. She's more conservative now than she was in college. Noun His message is being well received by conservatives. proposed legislation that was opposed by conservatives throughout the state
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Nationally and in Florida, Republicans and conservative groups have focused on 2022 School Board elections. Anthony Man, Sun Sentinel, 11 June 2022 Mace has the backing of both GOP leadership, such as Reps. Kevin McCarthy and Steve Scalise, and conservative groups, including the NRA and Club for Growth. Rick Klein, ABC News, 10 June 2022 While Louisiana has historically been conservative and hasn’t seen a Black candidate win statewide office since the Reconstruction era, Chambers unrepentant, liberal approach might be exactly what Louisiana needs. Essence, 10 June 2022 Bullish pundits believe that number is far too conservative, however, considering that Thursday’s $18 million in previews paced ahead of Fallen Kingdom ($15.3 million). Pamela Mcclintock, The Hollywood Reporter, 10 June 2022 Ant’s record-breaking IPO was originally scheduled for November 2020, but regulators forced its cancellation following comments from founder Jack Ma that the government was being too conservative about financial risk. Nicholas Gordon, Fortune, 10 June 2022 Kira was the first American Girl doll with LGBTQ characters in her storyline, which sparked outrage from conservative groups. Morgan Sung, NBC News, 7 June 2022 Two proposals brought by conservative groups failed to pass. CBS News, 26 May 2022 Nessel has vowed not to appeal the injunction, but conservative groups have asked the Michigan Court of Appeals to overturn the injunction. Arpan Lobo, Detroit Free Press, 25 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In many ways, this Social Justice Mom is a cautionary tale of what can happen to the child of a conservative if allowed free rein in the library. Laura Jedeed, The New Republic, 31 May 2022 Musk isn't really a conservative in any meaningful sense. W. James Antle Iii, The Week, 27 Apr. 2022 Two television ads from a super PAC called Pennsylvania Conservative Fund try to portray Oz as a phony who is merely pretending to be a conservative. Daniel Dale, CNN, 8 Apr. 2022 The trial could all but end the political career of a congressman seen as a reliable conservative who coasted to easy wins but isn’t a familiar name outside of Nebraska. Brian Melley And Grant Schulte, The Christian Science Monitor, 25 Mar. 2022 The trial could all but end the political career of a congressman seen as a reliable conservative who coasted to easy wins but isn't a familiar name outside of Nebraska. Brian Melley, USA TODAY, 25 Mar. 2022 The trial could all but end the political career of a congressman seen as a reliable conservative who coasted to easy wins but isn't a familiar name outside of Nebraska. CBS News, 24 Mar. 2022 But a desire to preserve and further the American founding is the very definition of an American conservative. Jay Nordlinger, National Review, 4 Mar. 2022 Preddy, a gun-owning conservative, also wondered: How could this country have done nothing for a decade after 20 students and six adults were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut? Claire Galofaro, Anchorage Daily News, 31 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'conservative.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of conservative

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4

Noun

1831, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for conservative

Adjective

see conserve entry 1

Noun

see conserve entry 1

Learn More About conservative

Time Traveler for conservative

Time Traveler

The first known use of conservative was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near conservative

conservatist

conservative

Conservative Baptist

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for conservative

Last Updated

16 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Conservative.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/conservative. Accessed 27 Jun. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for conservative

conservative

adjective
con·​ser·​va·​tive | \ kən-ˈsər-və-tiv How to pronounce conservative (audio) \

Kids Definition of conservative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : favoring a policy of keeping things as they are : opposed to change
2 : favoring established styles and standards He wears conservative ties.
3 : likely to be lower than what the real amount or number is a conservative estimate

Other Words from conservative

conservatively adverb

conservative

noun

Kids Definition of conservative (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person who is opposed to change : a cautious person

conservative

adjective
con·​ser·​va·​tive | \ kən-ˈsər-vət-iv How to pronounce conservative (audio) \

Medical Definition of conservative

: not extreme or drastic especially : designed to preserve parts or restore or preserve function conservative treatment of prostate cancer by watchful waiting or hormonal therapy in contrast to radical prostatectomy — compare aggressive sense 3, radical entry 1

Other Words from conservative

conservatively adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on conservative

Nglish: Translation of conservative for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of conservative for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Odd Habits and Quirks

  • image1926873504
  • Which of the following best describes an easily irritated person?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!