Adjective "pragmatic" definition and examples



Definitions and examples


Dealing with things sensibly and realistically in a way that is based on practical rather than theoretical considerations.
  1. 'But for all his intellectual gifts, his kingship was essentially pragmatic.'
  2. 'The Democrats decided they needed a different, more pragmatic approach in order to win.'
  3. 'I know I am recommending a pragmatic rather than a principled stand, but that is what national interest and foreign policy is all about.'
  4. 'Unfortunately, while it is eminently pragmatic, that doesn't mean that it's actually morally right.'
  5. 'The whirlwind tour was meant to humanize the low-cost leviathan so often depicted as self-serving and ruthlessly pragmatic.'
  6. 'He praised the practical and pragmatic approach of the college in developing a curriculum of courses designed to help students get on in the workplace.'
  7. 'This policy was based on two pragmatic considerations, and no guerilla organisation would overlook these.'
  8. 'He was highly practical and would come up with pragmatic solutions on various issues.'
  9. 'The lesson has certainly helped me rethink my politics and become more pragmatic and realistic in terms of our own struggle.'
  10. 'But the decisions about whether or not to do them would be ruthlessly pragmatic: Would it work?'
  11. 'Another aspect to this pragmatic understanding of American federalism is apparent in times of national crisis.'
  12. 'But these pragmatic matters have nothing to do with fundamental determinism.'
  13. 'Some Pascalians propose combining pragmatic and epistemic factors in a two-stage process.'
  14. 'Nationalist fundamentalism as a basis for French policy gave way to pragmatic intergovernmentalism.'
  15. 'The contextualist / pragmatic outlook provokes anxieties of its own.'
  16. 'This is a programme that any pragmatic centre-right government could be proud of.'
  17. 'I discuss in relation to cross-cultural spoken and written data two such features, and argue that they may well lead to some form of pragmatic failure.'
  18. 'Would not a semantically empty text, keeping only the pragmatic skeleton of a conventional letter, aptly embody the artificiality of such letters?'
  19. 'This is how what linguists term pragmatic markers have arisen in languages worldwide.'


1. of or relating to a practical point of view or practical considerations.

2. Philosophy. of or relating to pragmatism (def 2).

3. of or relating to pragmatics (def 1, 2).

4. treating historical phenomena with special reference to their causes, antecedent conditions, and results.

5. of or relating to the affairs of state or community.

6. Archaic. busy; active. officious; meddlesome; interfering. dogmatic; opinionated. noun

7. pragma

More examples(as adjective)

"ministers can be pragmatic in things."

"governments can be pragmatic in minds."

"rods can be pragmatic about risks."

"people can be pragmatic in formulations."

"people can be pragmatic in decisions."

More examples++


Late 16th century (in the senses ‘busy, interfering, conceited’): via Latin from Greek pragmatikos ‘relating to fact’, from pragma ‘deed’ (from the stem of prattein ‘do’). The current senses date from the mid 19th century.