Why was clemency trending last week?


[sen-sey-shuh-nl] /sɛnˈseɪ ʃə nl/
producing or designed to produce a startling effect, strong reaction, intense interest, etc., especially by exaggerated, superficial, or lurid elements:
a sensational novel.
extraordinarily good; conspicuously excellent; phenomenal:
a sensational quarterback.
of or relating to the senses or sensation.
Origin of sensational
1830-40; sensation + -al1
Related forms
sensationally, adverb
pseudosensational, adjective
unsensational, adjective
unsensationally, adverb
1. exciting, stimulating.
1. prosaic, dull. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for sensational
  • There is an element of the exaggerated or sensational embedded in some of the pieces.
  • Creamy and round, with sensational vanilla and apple spice cake flavors.
  • Sometimes the coverage is sensational because the news itself is sensational.
  • There was little sense of outrage, and the details filled page after sensational page of the tabloid newspapers.
  • But then the website has to survive on sensational articles to gain simple audiences by making it look magical.
  • The dances are less sensational than sensationalist.
  • They need ratings, and doing news stories with sensational views gets them the ratings they need.
  • It was a totally new type of gadget that came out of the blue and whipped up sensational demand.
  • Please don't create sensational headlines based on one or two studies.
  • After all, it's the sensational stories about shortages and looming disaster that sell newspapers.
British Dictionary definitions for sensational


causing or intended to cause intense feelings, esp of curiosity, horror, etc: sensational disclosures in the press
(informal) extremely good: a sensational skater
of or relating to the faculty of sensation
(philosophy) of or relating to sensationalism
Derived Forms
sensationally, 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 sensational

"of or pertaining to sensation or the senses," 1840; "aiming at violently excited effects," 1863, from sensation in its secondary sense. Related: Sensationalistic; sensationalistically.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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