Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Extreme in effect; severe or radical.
  • adjective Acting rapidly or violently.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Effective; efficacious; powerful; acting with force or violence; vigorous: as, a drastic cathartic. Compare cathartic, adjective
  • noun A medicine which speedily and effectually purges.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective (Med.) Acting rapidly and violently; efficacious; powerful; -- opposed to bland.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective Extreme, severe.
  • adjective Acting rapidly or violently.
  • adjective Extremely severe or extensive.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective forceful and extreme and rigorous

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Greek drastikos, active, from drastos, to be done, from drān, to do.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Ancient Greek δραστικός (drastikos, "active, efficient"), from δρᾶσις (drasis, "strength, efficacy"), itself from δράω (drao, "to do")

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Examples

  • He also blames the so-called quantitative easing monetary policies in countries like the United States for causing what he describes as "drastic fluctuations" in currency exchange rates and commodity prices.

    China Offers Earthquake Condolences to Japan

  • He also blames the so-called quantitative easing monetary policies in countries like the United States for causing what he describes as "drastic fluctuations" in currency exchange rates and commodity prices.

    China Offers Earthquake Condolences to Japan

  • In a statement in Pretoria the IFP said the move, which it described as drastic, had to be discussed widely since it impacted negatively on students conducting their studies in Afrikaans.

    ANC Daily News Briefing

  • Motoko Rich reported in The Times recently on new research showing that most people who lost their jobs in recent years now make less and have not maintained their lifestyles, with many experiencing what they describe as drastic - and probably irreversible - declines in income.

    msnbc.com: Top msnbc.com headlines

  • C.ristopher C. Healy, the chairman of the C.nnecticut Republican Party, said Republicans were justified in blocking what he described as a drastic overreaching by Mr. Obama.

    NYT > Home Page

  • C.ristopher C. Healy, the chairman of the C.nnecticut Republican Party, said Republicans were justified in blocking what he described as a drastic overreaching by Mr. Obama.

    NYT > Home Page

  • C.ristopher C. Healy, the chairman of the C.nnecticut Republican Party, said Republicans were justified in blocking what he described as a drastic overreaching by Mr. Obama.

    NYT > Home Page

  • C.ristopher C. Healy, the chairman of the C.nnecticut Republican Party, said Republicans were justified in blocking what he described as a drastic overreaching by Mr. Obama.

    NYT > Home Page

  • Speaking at the conclusion of the G20 economic summit this week, President Obama spoke of what he called the drastic decline in U.S. exports over the last several months.

    NPR Topics: News

  • Getting people to agree to a rule change, no matter how "drastic," is not cheating.

    Lance Mannion:

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