dramatic


dramatic
dramatic, theatrical, dramaturgic, melodramatic, histrionic are not close synonyms although all imply special reference to plays as performed by actors or to the effects which are produced by acted plays.
Dramatic basically denotes relationship to the drama as written or as produced
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a dramatic critic

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a dramatic performance

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It may imply an effect or a combination of effects appropriate to the drama (as a stirring of the imagination and emotions by vivid and expressive action, speech, and gesture, or by the exciting complications of a plot)
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the dramatic appeal of a great orator

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the dramatic storytelling . . . of incidents which have a sympathetic hero— Russell

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an idyll of Theocritus ... is today as much alive as the most dramatic passages of the Iliad—stirs the reader's feeling quite as much— Cat her

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Theatrical denotes relationship to the theater
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a theatrical office

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a theatrical agent

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It may imply effects appropriate to the theater as the place where plays are produced, and to the demands which its limitations, its convention, and, often, its need of financial success make both upon a play and its performance; the term therefore usually implies a marked degree of artificiality or conventionality, a direct and sometimes a blatant appeal to the senses and emotions, and often an overdoing or exaggeration in gesture, in speech, or in action
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the situations are in the most effective sense theatrical, without being in the profounder sense dramatic— T. S. Eliot

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he had already learned that with this people religion was necessarily theatricalGather

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Dramaturgic, which stresses the technical aspects of the drama and its presentation, may be used in place of theatrical when the more or less derogatory connotations of that word are to be avoided and the emphasis is upon those elements in a play which fit it for representation in a theater
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poetic plays are often lacking in dramaturgic quality

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a play that is said to be "good theater" is both dramatic and dramaturgic in its character

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every dramaturgic practice that subordinates the words to any other medium has trivialized the drama— Bentley

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Melodramatic implies a manner characteristic of melodrama; it, therefore, usually connotes exaggerated emotionalism or inappropriate theatricalism
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make a melodramatic speech

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employ melodramatic gestures

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for the first time in his centuries of debate with the Tozers, he was melodramatic. He shook his fist under Bert's nose— Sinclair Lewis

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but suppose . . . the most lurid or melodramatic solution you like. Suppose the servant really killed the master— Chesterton

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Histrionic is more limited than theatrical for it implies reference to the tones of voice, gestures, movements, and appearance characteristic of actors, especially in times before realism was attempted in dramatic performances
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good looks are more desired than histrionic skill— Shaw

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a tall, histrionic, dark man with a tossing mane— S. E. White

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New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • dramatic — DRAMÁTIC, Ă, dramatici, ce, adj. 1. Care ţine de dramă sau de teatru, privitor la dramă sau la teatru. ♢ Artă dramatică = ansamblu de principii privitoare la interpretarea (interpreta) şi la punerea în scenă a unui spectacol, a unei piese. Artist …   Dicționar Român

  • Dramatic — Dra*mat ic (dr[.a]*m[a^]t [i^]k), Dramatical Dra*mat ic*al (dr[.a]*m[a^]t [i^]*kal), a. [Gr. dramatiko s, fr. dra^ma: cf. F. dramatique.] Of or pertaining to the drama; as, dramatic arts. [WordNet sense 3] [1913 Webster] 2. suitable to or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Dramatic — may refer to: Drama, a literary form involving parts for actors Dramatic, a voice type classification in European classical music, describing a specific vocal weight and range at the lower end of a given voice part Dramatic soprano, a strong… …   Wikipedia

  • dramatic — 1580s, from L.L. dramaticus, from Gk. dramatikos pertaining to plays, from drama (gen. dramatos; see DRAMA (Cf. drama)). Meaning full of action and striking display, fit for a drama is from 1725. Dramatic irony is recorded from 1907. Related:… …   Etymology dictionary

  • dramatic — ► ADJECTIVE 1) relating to drama. 2) sudden and striking: a dramatic increase. 3) exciting or impressive. 4) intended to create an effect; theatrical. DERIVATIVES dramatically adverb …   English terms dictionary

  • dramatic — [drə mat′ik] adj. [LL dramaticus < Gr dramatikos] 1. of or connected with drama 2. a) having the characteristics of a drama, esp. conflict; like a play b) filled with action, emotion, or exciting qualities; vivid, striking, etc. c) great,… …   English World dictionary

  • dramatic — index histrionic, moving (evoking emotion), potent Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • dramatic — англ. [дрэма/тик] drammatico ит. [драмма/тико] dramatique фр. [драмати/к] dramatisch нем. [драма/тиш] драматично, драматически …   Словарь иностранных музыкальных терминов

  • dramatic — [adj] exciting, moving affecting, breathtaking, climactic, comic, effective, electrifying, emotional, expressive, farcical, histrionic, impressive, melodramatic, powerful, sensational, startling, striking, sudden, suspenseful, tense, theatrical,… …   New thesaurus

  • dramatic — dra|mat|ic [drəˈmætık] adj 1.) great and sudden dramatic change/shift/improvement ▪ Computers have brought dramatic changes to the workplace. dramatic increase/rise/fall/drop/reduction etc ▪ Universities have suffered a dramatic drop in student… …   Dictionary of contemporary English


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