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Definition of 'critical'


  1. marked by a tendency to find and call attention to errors and flaws; "a critical attitude"
       Antonyms: uncritical
  2. at or of a point at which a property or phenomenon suffers an abrupt change especially having enough mass to sustain a chain reaction; "a critical temperature of water is 100 degrees C--its boiling point at standard atmospheric pressure"; "critical mass"; "go critical"
       Antonyms: noncritical
  3. characterized by careful evaluation and judgment; "a critical reading"; "a critical dissertation"; "a critical analysis of Melville's writings"
       Antonyms: uncritical noncritical
  4. urgently needed; absolutely necessary; "a critical element of the plan"; "critical medical supplies"; "vital for a healthy society"; "of vital interest"
       Synonyms: vital
  5. forming or having the nature of a turning point or crisis; "a critical point in the campaign"; "the critical test"
       Synonyms: decisive
  6. being in or verging on a state of crisis or emergency; "a critical shortage of food"; "a critical illness"; "an illness at the critical stage"
       Antonyms: noncritical noncrucial
  7. of or involving or characteristic of critics or criticism; "critical acclaim"

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