What does reactionary mean?

Definitions for reactionary
riˈæk ʃəˌnɛr ire·ac·tiona·ry

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word reactionary.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. reactionary, ultraconservative, extreme right-wingeradjective

    an extreme conservative; an opponent of progress or liberalism

  2. reactionary, reactionist, far-rightadjective

    extremely conservative


  1. reactionarynoun

    One who is opposed to change.

  2. reactionarynoun

    One who is very conservative.

  3. reactionaryadjective

    Opposed to change; urging a return to a previous state.

  4. reactionaryadjective

    Very conservative.

  5. Etymology: From réactionnaire. Used in the time of the French revolution to refer to a person opposing the revolution; as in a person favoring a reaction to the revolution. First known usage in English in a translation of Lazare Carnot's letter on the Conspiracy of the 18th Fructidor published in London, 1799.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Reactionaryadjective

    being, causing, or favoring reaction; as, reactionary movements

  2. Reactionarynoun

    one who favors reaction, or seeks to undo political progress or revolution


  1. Reactionary

    A reactionary is a person who holds political viewpoints that favor a return to a previous state in a society. The word can also be an adjective describing such viewpoints or policies. Reactionaries are considered to be one end of a political spectrum whose opposite pole is radicalism, though reactionary ideologies may be themselves radical. While it has not been generally considered positive to be regarded as a reactionary it has been adopted as a self-description by some such as Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn, Gerald Warner of Craigenmaddie and John Lukacs.

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  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of reactionary in Chaldean Numerology is: 5

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of reactionary in Pythagorean Numerology is: 3

Examples of reactionary in a Sentence

  1. Chris Weston:

    It seems logical that they would want to see the wash up from this week's Federal Reserve meeting and hold the ability to be reactionary, if we see anything from Mr. Kuroda and the BOJ today, it will be setting the scene for additional measures if they so need.

  2. Chicago Principals Administrators Association:

    It should not be an ad hoc reactionary response that creates inequities that are predictable among social and economic lines, instead, it feels as if the district’s approach was more focused on eroding the trust we’ve worked so hard to develop by pitting schools, principals, parents, and staff against each other than on actually providing safety and support for students and communities.

  3. Jonathan Drezner:

    We’ve mostly been reactionary in terms of our preparations, it should n’t be that a kid has to die for Little Rock to be prepared.

  4. Martin Luther King, Jr.:

    The limitation of riots, moral questions aside, is that they cannot win and their participants know it. Hence, rioting is not revolutionary but reactionary because it invites defeat. It involves an emotional catharsis, but it must be followed by a sense of futility.

  5. Marshal Tito:

    Any movement in history which attempts to perpetuate itself, becomes reactionary.

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Translations for reactionary

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    one whose prevailing mental imagery takes the form of inner feelings of action
    • A. dicotyledonous
    • B. ostensive
    • C. naiant
    • D. motile

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