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[sen-sey-shuh-nl] /sɛnˈseɪ ʃə nl/
producing or designed to produce a startling effect, strong reaction, intense interest, etc., especially by exaggerated, superficial, or lurid elements:
a sensational novel.
extraordinarily good; conspicuously excellent; phenomenal:
a sensational quarterback.
of or relating to the senses or sensation.
Origin of sensational
First recorded in 1830-40; sensation + -al1
Related forms
sensationally, adverb
pseudosensational, adjective
unsensational, adjective
unsensationally, adverb
1. exciting, stimulating.
1. prosaic, dull. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for sensationally
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Added to that, there was my sensationally successful career.

    Inside John Barth William W. Stuart
  • All at once, almost anything I undertook to do was sensationally successful.

    Inside John Barth William W. Stuart
  • "It concerns the most sacred emotions of my heart, mademoiselle," he said, sensationally.

    Vera Nevill Mrs. H. Lovett Cameron
  • We are sensationally informed that General Fitzfizzle told his officers to retire to a safe place if they were afraid.

    Our Standard-Bearer Oliver Optic
  • Any poetry that is marked by violence, that is conspicuous in color, that is sensationally odd, makes an immediate appeal.

  • Illustrated lectures followed by literature are of inestimable value if rightly and not sensationally given.

  • That's allegory; besides, you express yourself too sensationally, sir, which I consider impertinence.

    The Possessed Fyodor Dostoevsky
  • He was suffering from low fever, and his condition was as sensationally shocking as any reporter could have wished.

    Ginx's Baby Edward Jenkins
British Dictionary definitions for sensationally


causing or intended to cause intense feelings, esp of curiosity, horror, etc: sensational disclosures in the press
(informal) extremely good: a sensational skater
of or relating to the faculty of sensation
(philosophy) of or relating to sensationalism
Derived Forms
sensationally, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for sensationally



"of or pertaining to sensation or the senses," 1840; "aiming at violently excited effects," 1863, from sensation in its secondary sense. Related: Sensationalistic; sensationalistically.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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