One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A critical period or event.‘the first major climacteric in twentieth-century poetry’
critical point, decisive point, turning point, crossroads, critical period, crux, climax, culmination, height, head, moment of truth, zero hour, point of no return, rubiconView synonyms
- ‘The destruction of the Babri Masjid was an important climacteric in the decline of the administration.’
- ‘The year 1981 was a major climacteric for the politicization of policing, most obviously because of the urban riots, unprecedented in the twentieth century.’
- ‘This process of alternative and individual reading reaches its climacteric in the ‘full flood of unlicensed text and independent thought’ of the 1640s.’
- ‘But the First World War shocked even him, and that was probably a climacteric.’
- ‘By contrast, Dickens's second protagonist, Oliver Twist, experiences what seems set to be his climacteric in an intensely fraught boyhood.’
- ‘The released film now opens with the final scenes of Eddie's ejection from his government job for reasons which will not become apparent until the climacteric of Three Dollars.’
- ‘In the end, this subplot becomes a mere plot device when the out-of-control avenging husband bails up O'Reilly at the climacteric.’
- ‘The sight of him obediently doing this is an awe-inspiring climacteric in his career.’
- 1.1Medicine The period of life when fertility and sexual activity are in decline; (in women) menopause.
- ‘A transitional period occurs prior to menopause termed the climacteric or perimenopause.’
- ‘Lock starts the chapter with an interesting historical review of the emergence of the female climacteric or menopause in medical and psychoanalytic discourse.’
- ‘At the climacteric, various symptoms such as forgetfulness, hot flush, depressive neurosis, abnormal sensation, and sleeplessness are often observed, due to hypofunction of the ovaries.’
- ‘Whatever the nomenclature, be it male menopause or climacteric or age related hypotestosteronaemia, men presenting with symptoms outlined in the box should be investigated.’
- ‘The climacteric arrived with a massive run on the pound.’
- 1.2Botany The ripening period of certain fruits such as apples, involving increased metabolism and only possible while still on the tree.
- ‘Conflicting results have been reported during the ripening of climacteric fruits after harvest.’
- ‘Ethylene plays a major role in initiating ripening in climacteric fruits such as tomato and apple.’
- ‘It is thought that the increase in ethylene responsiveness during petal development culminates in the ethylene climacteric.’
- ‘In climacteric fruits such as peaches and tomato, ripening is associated with a characteristic burst of respiration which correlates with an increase in ethylene production.’
- ‘Thus it appears that some aspects of ethylene-dependent gene expression are conserved between climacteric fruits such as melon and tomato.’
1Having extreme and far-reaching implications or results; critical.‘Britain must possess so climacteric a weapon in order to deter an atomically armed enemy’
pivotal, critical, key, decisive, deciding, determining, settling, testing, trying, searchingView synonyms
- ‘Given these emphases on significant dates, it may not be coincidental that the Ara Pacis was begun during the year in which Augustus reached the climacteric age of fifty.’
- ‘There are two aspects of this climacteric event to be considered in relation to the history of our civilization.’
- ‘The fact that such a climacteric event of our history is not being taught is disconcerting.’
- 1.1Medicine Occurring at, characteristic of, or undergoing the climacteric; (in women) menopausal.
- ‘In females about 50 years old, various symptoms of climacteric disorders may appear with the decline of ovarian function.’
- ‘Again, the results revealed no significant differences in climacteric symptoms or well-being between the groups.’
- ‘The authors conclude that a dosage of 114 mg per day of phytoestrogens for three months does not relieve hot flushes or other climacteric symptoms.’
- ‘We studied the effects of daily use of isoflavonoids on climacteric symptoms and quality of life in patients with a history of breast cancer.’
- ‘Both Western and Chinese herbal traditions have numerous solutions for climacteric women.’
- 1.2Botany (of a fruit) undergoing a climacteric.
- ‘The majority of this work, however, has been conducted on climacteric species.’
- ‘In the climacteric fruit tomato, ethylene is perceived by a family of six receptor proteins.’
- ‘Ripening is physiologically divided into two distinct classes: climacteric and non-climacteric.’
- ‘As a senescing hormone, it promotes leaf-yellowing, climacteric fruit ripening, flower and leaf abscission.’
- ‘Pear are climacteric fruit: their ripening is associated with a burst of autocatalytic ethylene production.’
Mid 16th century (in the sense ‘constituting a critical period in life’): from French climactérique or via Latin from Greek klimaktērikos, from klimaktēr ‘critical period’, from klimax ‘ladder, climax’.
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