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[puh-lit-i-kuh l] /pəˈlɪt ɪ kəl/
of, pertaining to, or concerned with politics:
political writers.
of, pertaining to, or connected with a political party:
a political campaign.
exercising or seeking power in the governmental or public affairs of a state, municipality, etc.:
a political machine; a political boss.
of, pertaining to, or involving the state or its government:
a political offense.
having a definite policy or system of government:
a political community.
of or pertaining to citizens:
political rights.
1545-55; < Latin polītic(us) civic (see politic) + -al1
Related forms
politically, adverb
antipolitical, adjective
antipolitically, adverb
nonpolitical, adjective
nonpolitically, adverb
overpolitical, adjective
overpolitically, adverb
prepolitical, adjective
prepolitically, adverb
pseudopolitical, adjective
quasi-political, adjective
quasi-politically, adverb
subpolitical, adjective
subpolitically, adverb
unpolitical, adjective
unpolitically, adverb
Can be confused
politic, political.
politically, politicly. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for political
  • This overview will be indispensable to anyone interested in political and civil liberties.
  • Our political differences, however, never lessened our personal friendship.
  • Voter databases are old hat to political campaigns.
  • The portion of my union dues that is spent on political activity is decided by elected bodies that I can vote on.
  • He understood that the solutions do not lie in any one leader or political party.
  • However, overt political titles are responsible for fueling its growth in recent years.
  • The first complete system of political economy by the articulator of laissez-faire capitalism.
  • The two research workers developed three measures of political knowledge, involvement and ideas.
  • He explores the tension between inspiring, idealistic leadership and the art of political compromise.
  • Weird, all that political action on behalf of a fake trend.
British Dictionary definitions for political


of or relating to the state, government, the body politic, public administration, policy-making, etc
  1. of, involved in, or relating to government policy-making as distinguished from administration or law
  2. of or relating to the civil aspects of government as distinguished from the military
of, dealing with, or relating to politics: a political person
of, characteristic of, or relating to the parties and the partisan aspects of politics
organized or ordered with respect to government: a political unit
Derived Forms
politically, adverb
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
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Word Origin and History for political

1550s, "pertaining to a polity, civil affairs, or government;" from Latin politicus "of citizens or the state" (see politic (adj.)) + -al (1). Meaning "taking sides in party politics" (usually pejorative) is from 1749. Political prisoner first recorded 1860; political science is from 1779 (first attested in Hume). Political animal translates Greek politikon zoon (Aristotle, "Politics," I.ii.9) "an animal intended to live in a city; a social animal."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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