critical Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary
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Meaning of “critical” in the English Dictionary

"critical" in British English

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criticaladjective

uk   /ˈkrɪt.ɪ.kəl/  us   /ˈkrɪt̬-/

critical adjective (NOT PLEASED)

B2 saying that someone or something is ​bad or ​wrong: a critical ​report The ​report is highly critical ofsafetystandards at the ​factory.
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critical adjective (IMPORTANT)

B2 of the ​greatestimportance to the way things might ​happen: The president's ​support is critical (to this ​project). a critical ​decision
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critical adjective (GIVING OPINIONS)

C2 giving ​opinions or ​judgments on ​books, ​plays, ​films, etc.: She has written a ​major critical ​appraisal/​study of Saul Bellow's ​novels. His last ​film won/​received critical acclaim (= was ​praised by ​filmcritics).
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critical adjective (SERIOUS)

B2 extremelyserious or ​dangerous: Both ​drivers are critical/in a critical condition (= so ​badlyhurt that they might ​die) after the 120 ​mphcrash.
(Definition of critical from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"critical" in American English

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criticaladjective

 us   /ˈkrɪt̬·ɪ·kəl/

critical adjective (IMPORTANT)

of the ​greatestimportance: critical ​industries What ​happens in the next 48 ​hours is critical.

critical adjective (VERY BAD)

very ​bad or ​dangerous: He was ​admitted to Metropolitan Hospital in critical ​condition.

critical adjective (JUDGING ENTERTAINMENT)

showingapproval by those whose ​job is to ​judgeentertainment: The ​movie was a ​financial and critical ​success.

critical adjective (DISAPPROVING PERSON)

expressing an ​opinion about something or someone, esp. a ​negativeopinion: My ​mother is always so critical of the way I ​dress!
(Definition of critical from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"critical" in Business English

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criticaladjective

uk   us   /ˈkrɪtɪkəl/
extremely important to the ​progress or ​success of something: critical to/for sth Logistics and ​distribution are critical to an ​e-commerce venture's ​success. Critical decisions need to be taken. We see this as a critical ​time and ​potentially a ​turningpoint in the ​crisis.
extremely serious or dangerous: be in critical condition As a ​result of unchecked ​pollution, the Chesapeake Bay is in critical ​condition. The ​company had a ​loss of $511,000 and a critical ​shortage of ​cash.
saying that someone or something is ​bad or wrong: A ​highly critical ​report was ​released Tuesday on BP's five U.S. ​refineries.critical of sb/sth He is very critical of his ​manager.
using careful ​judgment: We need to do some critical ​thinking to solve this problem.
critically
adverb
The ​smallbusinessmarket as a whole is critically important. Regional or ​bilateraltradedeals need to be looked at more critically.
(Definition of critical from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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