progressive

1 of 2

adjective

pro·​gres·​sive prə-ˈgre-siv How to pronounce progressive (audio)
1
a
: of, relating to, or characterized by progress
b
: making use of or interested in new ideas, findings, or opportunities
c
: of, relating to, or constituting an educational theory marked by emphasis on the individual child, informality of classroom procedure, and encouragement of self-expression
2
: of, relating to, or characterized by progression
3
: moving forward or onward : advancing
4
a
: increasing in extent or severity
a progressive disease
b
: increasing in rate as the base increases
a progressive tax
5
often capitalized : of or relating to political Progressives
6
: of, relating to, or constituting a verb form that expresses action or state in progress at the time of speaking or a time spoken of
7
: of, relating to, or being a multifocal lens with a gradual transition between focal lengths
progressive bifocals
8
: or, relating to, or using a method of video scanning (as for television or a computer monitor) in which the horizontal lines of each frame are drawn successively from top to bottom compare interlaced
progressively adverb
progressiveness noun

progressive

2 of 2

noun

1
a
: one that is progressive
b
: one believing in moderate political change and especially social improvement by governmental action
2
capitalized : a member of any of various U.S. political parties: such as
a
: a member of a predominantly agrarian minor party that around 1912 split off from the Republicans
specifically : bull moose
b
: a follower of Robert M. La Follette in the presidential campaign of 1924
c
: a follower of Henry A. Wallace in the presidential campaign of 1948

Examples of progressive in a Sentence

Adjective the progressive movements of the hands of a clock progressive forms of animal life Noun Believe” is never used in the progressive.
Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective
In fact, the U.S. tax system is designed to be progressive, meaning that lower-income Americans pay a smaller share of their income in federal taxes than high-income workers, noted Alex Muresianu, senior policy analyst at the Tax Foundation, a think tank focused on tax issues. Aimee Picchi, CBS News, 10 Apr. 2024 But reformers — including both progressive Democrats and libertarian-minded Republicans — want to add a requirement that officials must get a warrant before querying the repository for the contents of Americans’ communications. Charlie Savage, New York Times, 10 Apr. 2024 These include progressive slots where the jackpot can often go above $300,000. Sponsored Content, The Mercury News, 10 Apr. 2024 Key Takeaways Pulmonary arterial hypertension is a rare, incurable, progressive condition that causes fatigue and difficulty breathing. Nick Blackmer, Verywell Health, 8 Apr. 2024 The younger, progressive Democratic left is done with Israel, and fed up with Biden for enabling Netanyahu. Susan B. Glasser, The New Yorker, 5 Apr. 2024 Fred Fleitz, a more progressive candidate backed by the teachers union, was specifically seeking to replace Barney, a conservative. Journal Sentinel, 2 Apr. 2024 As described in writer and historian Michael Pye’s Antwerp: The Glory Years, their dispatches back home gushed about the city’s progressive ideas. Mary Winston Nicklin, Condé Nast Traveler, 2 Apr. 2024 Later, his success allowed Nashville to congratulate itself for being inclusive without being progressive. Stephen Deusner, SPIN, 1 Apr. 2024
Noun
The move, long sought by labor interests in Denver, has gained steam with backing from four City Council members, including three who were first elected last year and ran as progressives. Joe Rubino, The Denver Post, 9 Apr. 2024 Instead, the left wing of the party rallied around FDR’s previous vice president, Henry Wallace, who also split the party in 1948 by running for president on a third party ticket as a progressive. TIME, 3 Apr. 2024 About 22% of Latinos were first-time voters in 2020, according to Catalist, a data analysis company that conducts research for progressives and Democrats. Suzanne Gamboa, NBC News, 3 Apr. 2024 And in recent months, YC has found itself in the crossfire of a war between tech and progressives. Steven Levy, WIRED, 15 Mar. 2024 At its most petty and oversimplified, the fascism question became yet another way for the left to play one of its oldest parlor games: progressives accusing other progressives of being useful idiots for centrism. Andrew Marantz, The New Yorker, 27 Mar. 2024 Resistance has come more from progressives, who fear that Ms. Bass has reinforced the criminalization of poverty. Jill Cowan, New York Times, 25 Mar. 2024 The president faced a protest vote campaign led by Arizona progressives over his handling of Israel’s war in the Gaza Strip. Laura Gersony, The Arizona Republic, 19 Mar. 2024 Biden has faced increasing pressure from progressives and Arab Americans for his unwavering support of Israel in the months since the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel. Michael Collins, USA TODAY, 18 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'progressive.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

Noun

1844, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of progressive was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near progressive

Cite this Entry

“Progressive.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/progressive. Accessed 15 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

progressive

1 of 2 adjective
pro·​gres·​sive prə-ˈgres-iv How to pronounce progressive (audio)
1
a
: of, relating to, or showing progress or progression
b
: making use of or interested in new ideas
a progressive city
c
: of or relating to an educational theory emphasizing informal classrooms and encouraging self-expression
a progressive school
2
a
: moving forward or onward : advancing
the progressive movements of the hands of a clock
b
: spreading and becoming worse
a progressive disease
c
: increasing in rate as the base amount increases
a progressive tax
3
: of, relating to, or being a verb form that expresses action or state in progress at the time of speaking or a time spoken of
am seeing and is being seen are progressive forms
progressively adverb
progressiveness noun

progressive

2 of 2 noun
: a person believing in gradual political change and social improvement by government action

Medical Definition

progressive

adjective
pro·​gres·​sive prə-ˈgres-iv How to pronounce progressive (audio)
1
: increasing in extent or severity
a progressive disease
2
: of, relating to, or being a multifocal lens with a gradual transition between focal lengths
progressive bifocals
progressively adverb

Legal Definition

progressive

adjective
pro·​gres·​sive
: increasing in rate as the base increases
a progressive tax

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