the gradual development of society and social forms, institutions, etc., usually through a series of peaceful stages.Compare revolution(def 2).
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
sociol the process of social development from an early simple type of social organization to one that is complex and highly specialized
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