sea change

noun
1.
a striking change, as in appearance, often for the better.
2.
any major transformation or alteration.
3.
a transformation brought about by the sea.

Origin:
1600–10

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
sea change
 
n
a seemingly magical change, as brought about by the action of the sea
 
[coined by Shakespeare, in Ariel's song ``Full Fathom Five'' in The Tempest (1611)]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Example sentences
The long-awaited sea change in higher education is upon us.
The problem with this is that the doctorate is generally an acculturation
  process, which requires a sea change in mindset.
Their report called for a sea change in the way that economists and politicians
  think about the benefits of economic growth.
It seems to me that that would require a sea change in the way doctors and
  patients relate.
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