Synonyms for Pivotal:

adj.

all (adjective)
polar.
cardinal (adjective)
main, fundamental.
causative (adjective)
causative, effective, generative, causal, motivational, influential, responsible, germinal, executive, formative.
central (adjective)
nuclear, mid, halfway, salient, main, central, important, midway, middle, focal, key, midmost, core, interior, mean, median, intermediate, equidistant, innermost, axial, significant.
critical (adjective)
consequential, grave, serious.
important (adjective)
crucial, critical, major, fundamental, considerable, big-name, high-powered, salient, big-wig, eminent, vital, earthshaking, serious, heavyweight, prominent, world-shaking, meaningful, influential, consequential, important, significant, momentous, notable, grave, noteworthy, distinguished.
key (adjective)
major.
life-and-death (adjective)
earthshaking, meaningful.
middle (adjective)
centralized, midmost, core, nuclear, middling, geocentric, medium, medial, intermediate, axial, mediocre, halfway, central, half, Bisecting, average, median, equidistant, mezzo, half-and-half, middle-of-the-road, mid, mean, middle.
momentous (adjective)
notable, considerable.
pivotal (adjective)
central, momentous, critical, vital, crucial, focal, middle.

n.

foundation, frame, joist, buttress, scaffold, support, stanchion, rafter, framework, gantry. key. pivotal (noun)
crucial, important, polar.

Other synonyms:

essential
key.
Other relevant words:
key, major, fundamental, polar, significant, vital.

Usage examples for pivotal

  1. It is the pivotal organ of life. – Quiet Talks about Jesus by S. D. Gordon
  2. The pivotal word in Madison's argument is " different." – Public Opinion by Walter Lippmann