crucial

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search

English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

1706, from French crucial, a medical term for ligaments of the knee (which cross each other), from Latin crux, crucis (cross) (English crux), from the Proto-Indo-European *(s)ker- (to turn, to bend).

The meaning “decisive, critical” is extended from a logical term, Instantias Crucis, adopted by Francis Bacon in his influential Novum Organum (1620); the notion is of cross fingerboard signposts at forking roads, thus a requirement to choose. Specific quote is:[1]

Inter praerogativas instantiarum, ponemus loco decimo quarto Instantias Crucis; translato vocabulo a Crucibus, quae erectae in biviis indicant et signant viarum separationes.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

crucial (comparative more crucial, superlative most crucial)

  1. Being essential or decisive for determining the outcome or future of something; extremely important.
    The battle of Tali-Ihantala in 1944 is one of the crucial moments in the history of Finland.
    A secure supply of crude oil is crucial for any modern nation, let alone a superpower.
  2. (archaic) Cruciform or cruciate; cross-shaped.
  3. (slang, chiefly Jamaica) Term of approval, particularly when applied to reggae music.
    Delbert Wilkins is the most crucial pirate radio DJ in Brixton.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Novum Organum, Francis Bacon, Book Two, “Aphorisms”, Section XXXVI

French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From a root of Latin crux.

Adjective[edit]

crucial m (feminine cruciale, masculine plural cruciaux, feminine plural cruciales)

  1. cruciform
  2. crucial, critical, vital

Portuguese[edit]

Adjective[edit]

crucial m, f (plural cruciais; comparable)

  1. crucial

Spanish[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From English crucial.

Adjective[edit]

crucial m, f (plural cruciales)

  1. crucial