1. expressing adverse or disapproving comments or judgments.
  2. expressing or involving an analysis of the merits and faults of a work of literature, music, or art.
    • (of a published literary or musical text) incorporating a detailed and scholarly analysis and commentary.
    • involving the objective analysis and evaluation of an issue in order to form a judgement.
  3. (of a situation or problem) having the potential to become disastrous; at a point of crisis.
    • (of a person) extremely ill and at risk of death.
    • having a decisive or crucial importance in the success, failure, or existence of something.
  4. Mathematics•Physics
    relating to or denoting a point of transition from one state to another.
  5. (of a nuclear reactor or fuel) maintaining a self-sustaining chain reaction.


Origin of critical

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