[ krit-i-kuhl ]
/ ˈkrɪt ɪ kəl /
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inclined to find fault or to judge with severity, often too readily: Parents who are too critical make their children anxious.
involving criticism, or skillful judgment as to truth, merit, etc.:The article provides a critical analysis of the Gulf War.
occupied with or skilled in criticism: She was one of the great critical journalists of the 20th century.
of or relating to critics or criticism, especially of literature, film, music, etc.: Critical appreciation of this author’s work has peaked in recent years.
providing textual variants, proposed emendations, etc.: The library has a new critical edition of Chaucer.
of the nature of a crisis; threatening a seriously bad outcome; grave: There was a critical shortage of food.
of decisive importance with respect to the outcome; crucial: The nation is facing a critical moment in its history.
essential; indispensable: Cocoa butter is a critical ingredient in chocolate.
Medicine/Medical. having unstable and abnormal vital signs and other unfavorable indicators, as loss of appetite, poor mobility, or unconsciousness: The patient has been upgraded from critical to stable.
- pertaining to a state, value, or quantity at which one or more properties of a substance or system undergo a change: The critical temperature of benzene is 289° C.
- (of fissionable material) having enough mass to sustain a chain reaction: They told us about a lab where some plutonium went critical.
OTHER WORDS FOR critical
1 captious, censorious, carping, faultfinding, caviling.
2 discriminating, judicious; exact, precise.
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OTHER WORDS FROM critical
crit·i·cal·ly, adverbcrit·i·cal·i·ty [-krit-i-kal-i-tee], / ˌkrɪt ɪˈkæl ɪ ti/, crit·i·cal·ness, nounan·ti·crit·i·cal, adjectivenon·crit·i·cal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use critical in a sentence
Gyp, deeply impressed by the criticalness of the situation, summoned a meeting of the Ravens.Highacres|Jane Abbott
I could better now realize our position than when at work, and the criticalness of it struck and awed me like a revelation.The Wreck of the Grosvenor, Volume 3 of 3|William Clark Russell
He was conducted to a chamber, and, the criticalness of his case requiring unusual attention, I spent the night at his bedside.Arthur Mervyn|Charles Brockden Brown
I could not make you comprehend the criticalness of our position.Lige on the Line of March|Glenna Lindsley Bigelow
Her mind was powerfully affected by the criticalness of her situation.Ormond, Volume I (of 3)|Charles Brockden Brown
British Dictionary definitions for critical
/ (ˈkrɪtɪkəl) /
containing or making severe or negative judgments
containing careful or analytical evaluationsa critical dissertation
of or involving a critic or criticism
of or forming a crisis; crucial; decisivea critical operation
urgently neededcritical medical supplies
informal so seriously injured or ill as to be in danger of dying
physics of, denoting, or concerned with a state in which the properties of a system undergo an abrupt changea critical temperature
go critical (of a nuclear power station or reactor) to reach a state in which a nuclear-fission chain reaction becomes self-sustaining
Derived forms of criticalcritically, adverbcriticalness, noun
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