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Definition of radical:

  1. A characteristic, essential, and fundamental constituent of any compound; hence, sometimes, an atom.
  2. A primitive letter; a letter that belongs to the radix.
  3. A primitive word; a radix, root, or simple, underived, uncompounded word; an etymon.
  4. A radical quantity. See under Radical, a.
  5. A radical vessel. See under Radical, a.
  6. Belonging to, or proceeding from, the root of a plant; as, radical tubers or hairs.
  7. Hence: Of or pertaining to the root or origin; reaching to the center, to the foundation, to the ultimate sources, to the principles, or the like; original; fundamental; thorough- going; unsparing; extreme; as, radical evils; radical reform; a radical party.
  8. Of or pertaining to a radix or root; as, a radical quantity; a radical sign. See below.
  9. Of or pertaining to the root; proceeding directly from the root.
  10. One who advocates radical changes in government or social institutions, especially such changes as are intended to level class inequalities; - opposed to conservative.
  11. Proceeding from a rootlike stem, or one which does not rise above the ground; as, the radical leaves of the dandelion and the sidesaddle flower.
  12. Relating, or belonging, to the root, or ultimate source of derivation; as, a radical verbal form.
  13. Specifically, a group of two or more atoms, not completely saturated, which are so linked that their union implies certain properties, and are conveniently regarded as playing the part of a single atom; a residue; -- called also a compound radical. Cf. Residue.

Synonyms:

motif, famous, total, guerrilla, corking, developmental, noble, central, etymon, original, seditious, theme, primary, evolutionary, agitator, solution, tip-top, open-minded, campaigner, advanced, A-OK, entire, bumper, surface, foot, top-flight, five-star, predominant, awesome, subject, boffo, musical theme, grand, lawless, insurrectionary, gilt-edged, grouping, phat, origin, racist, subversive, insubordinate, rabid, out-of-sight, al-Qa'ida, top-of-the-line, ascendant, thoroughgoing, understructure, fantastic, pedestal, chief, ultra, report, A1, banner, superlative, anarchist, nonconventional, organic, top, conscientious objector, unsurpassed, blue-ribbon, melodic theme, prow, bang-up, top-notch, conceptual, demonstrator, extremist, beginning, heavenly, growing, first-rate, groovy, composition, peachy, thorough, radically, activist, orthodox, fine, essential, freedom fighter, sensational, keen, positive, immense, blue-chip, sterling, basal, fantabulous, accumulative, comprehensive, al-Qaida, antecedent, numero uno, edge, bow, intransigent, tooth root, militant, rebellious, hype, four-star, concern, underlying, complete, exponential, choice, principal, ingrained, nontraditional, forward, gathering, away, chemical group, brag, civil, zealot, rebel, slick, first-string, radix, mean, radical sign, revolutionary, immoderate, boss, ultraconservative, topping, par excellence, riotous, ancestor, swell, conservative, utopian, left-wing, capital, alkali, groundwork, foundational, wizard, bully, progressive, cornerstone, prime, shank, constitutional, innate, fourfold, revolutionist, substructure, floor, wonderful, depleted, quality, nifty, nihilistic, deterministic, root, primitive, fundament, source, prize, far-out, leftist, righteous, superb, number one, pink, exponential, fab, theoretical, stalk, rotatory, declining, fanatic, stellar, gradual, prizewinning, first-class, high-class, top-shelf, graduated, fore, metaphysical, elementary, lovely, socialist, underlying, stand, paper, neat, great, dandy, gradually, leading, fundamental, beautiful, cosmetic, cracking, Communist, infrastructure, terrific, abstract, insurgent, divine, gone, nonconformist, brave, mutinous, dynamite, dope, belt bomber, counterrevolutionary, new, superior, al-Qaeda, down, recalcitrant, cool, group, base, bonny, jim-dandy, fanatical, avant-garde, etymon, frontline, free radical, communistic, popular, base of operations, nonorthodox, politics, uncompromising, home, red, hot, gangbusters, supreme, idea, stem, rootage, anarchic, basic, classic, fabulous, splendid, bag, root word, native, natural, mathematical group, perfect, main, stem turn, peachy keen, supernal, marvelous, liberal, nucleotide, topic, crackerjack, primo, basis, broad-minded, ascendent, quicksilver, foundation.

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