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See more synonyms for sensationalize on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object), sen·sa·tion·al·ized, sen·sa·tion·al·iz·ing.
  1. to make sensational.
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Also especially British, sen·sa·tion·al·ise.

Origin of sensationalize

First recorded in 1850–55; sensational + -ize
Related formsde·sen·sa·tion·al·ize, verb (used with object), de·sen·sa·tion·al·ized, de·sen·sa·tion·al·iz·ing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for sensationalize



  1. (tr) to cause (events, esp in newspaper reports) to seem more vivid, shocking, etc, than they really are
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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

Word Origin and History for sensationalize


1863, from sensational + -ize. Originally of audiences as well as topics. Related: Sensationalized; sensationalizing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper