- 1[usually before noun] having an important effect on a large part of something sweeping reforms/changes Security forces were given sweeping powers to search homes. a sweeping program of reorganization
- 2[usually before noun] (disapproving) too general and failing to think about or understand particular examples a sweeping generalization/statement
- 3sweeping victory a victory by a large number of votes, etc.
- 4[only before noun] forming a curved shape a sweeping gesture (= with your hand or arm) a sweeping staircase