Definition of climactic in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /klʌɪˈmaktɪk/


Acting as a culmination or resolution to a series of events; forming an exciting climax: the film’s climactic scenes
More example sentences
  • She appeared in more than a few slasher movies, always the young heroine who outsmarts the killer in a climactic final chase scene.
  • And the final climactic emotional moment is cringe inducing rather than searingly moving.
  • The World Cup is one coherent drama with developing conflict, mounting tension and a climactic resolution.
final, culminating, ending, finishing, closing, concluding, ultimate;
exciting, thrilling, stirring, action-packed, gripping, riveting, dramatic, hair-raising;
crucial, decisive, deciding, critical, momentous


Climactic and climatic are very similar in spelling and are often confused. Climactic means ‘forming a climax’, as in the film’s climactic scene, while climatic means ‘relating to climate’, as in prevailing climatic conditions.



Example sentences
  • When they converge in the middle to symbolise the cross, mood changes from meditative to climactically vehement.
  • Here the scale and repeated notes from bar 4 climactically return.
  • But not so in opera, where legato in a favourite aria can still an audience and then climactically bring it to its feet over the full spectrum of human emotions.


Late 19th century: formed irregularly from climax + -ic, probably influenced by climacteric.

Words that rhyme with climactic

anaphylactic, ataractic, autodidactic, chiropractic, didactic, galactic, lactic, prophylactic, syntactic, tactic

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: cli|mac¦tic

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.