I can think of "revolutionary theories" such as "quantum physics", but a theory is too specific and I want to be more general. However, if I use the phrase "revolutionary idea", it's too general, and doesn't mean idea that opens the door to whole new ideas. Is there any such word or phrase?

1 Answer 1


I would say groundbreaking ideas.

Or seminal ideas (usually used for work of a scientist that opened up a field).

Trailblazing would also work.

I think breakthrough could also be used to refer to such ideas.

Watershed moment in its figurative sense is also possible. It's a critical turning point in time where everything changes that will never be the same as before. This meaning comes from the literal meaning of a point or division in a river or a stream where the river is split into two or more paths.

Also try Rosetta stone.

The term Rosetta stone has been also used idiomatically to represent a crucial key in the process of decryption of encoded information, especially when a small but representative sample is recognised as the clue to understanding a larger whole.

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