Definition of Descriptive

1. Adjective. Serving to describe or inform or characterized by description. "A descriptive passage"

Derivative terms: Describe
Antonyms: Undescriptive

2. Adjective. Describing the structure of a language. "Descriptive grammar"
Category relationships: Grammar
Antonyms: Prescriptive

Definition of Descriptive

1. a. Tending to describe; having the quality of representing; containing description; as, a descriptive figure; a descriptive phrase; a descriptive narration; a story descriptive of the age.

Definition of Descriptive

1. Adjective. Of, or relating to description. ¹

2. Adjective. (grammar) Of an adjective, stating an attribute of the associated noun (as ''heavy'' in ''the heavy dictionary''). ¹

3. Adjective. (context: linguistics) Describing the structure, grammar, vocabulary and actual use of a language. ¹

4. Adjective. (context: science philosophy) Describing and seeking to classify, as opposed to normative or prescriptive. ¹

5. Noun. (grammar) An adjective (or other descriptive word) ¹

¹ Source:

Definition of Descriptive

1. [adj]

Medical Definition of Descriptive

1. Tending to describe; having the quality of representing; containing description; as, a descriptive figure; a descriptive phrase; a descriptive narration; a story descriptive of the age. Descriptive anatomy, that part of anatomy which treats of the forms and relations of parts, but not of their textures. Descriptive geometry, that branch of geometry. Which treats of the graphic solution of problems involving three dimensions, by means of projections upon auxiliary planes. Descrip"tively, Descrip"tiveness. Origin: L. Descriptivus: cf. F. Descriptif. Source: Websters Dictionary (01 Mar 1998)

Descriptive Pictures

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Lexicographical Neighbors of Descriptive

described video
description logic
descriptive (current term)
descriptive adjective
descriptive anatomy
descriptive anthropology
descriptive clause
descriptive ethics
descriptive geometries
descriptive geometry
descriptive linguistics
descriptive myology
descriptive psychiatry
descriptive statistics

Literary usage of Descriptive

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. Encyclopaedia Britannica: A Standard Work of Reference in Art, Literature (1907)
"Rotifera (6 descriptive Cuts) 8-12 Rotterdam, South Holland, Plan of 13 Rotterdam, South Holland, Environs of 14 Rouen, France, Plan of 16 Ruff 60 Sagitta ..."

2. An Autobiography by Herbert Spencer (1904)
"ENDING OF THE descriptive SOCIOLOGY. 1874—81. JET. 54—61. As during a long preceding period, so during the period covered by the foregoing six chapters, ..."

3. Curiosities of Literature by Isaac Disraeli (1834)
"Hence his processional splendour fatigues, and his descriptive ingenuity comes at ... descriptive poetry should be relieved by a skilful intermixture of ..."

4. Present Philosophical Tendencies: A Critical Survey of Naturalism, Idealism by Ralph Barton Perry (1912)
"This is what the descriptive method properly signifies. It is a discriminating disregard of the irrelevant, and a single-minded renunciation of ulterior ..."

5. Proceedings by American Society for Engineering Education (1898)
"THE CONSTRUCTION OF MODELS BY STUDENTS AS AN AID IN TEACHING descriptive GEOMETRY. BY HENRY S. JACOBY. Associate Professor of Bridge Engineering and ..."

6. Mineralogy: An Introduction to the Study of Minerals and Crystals by Edward Henry Kraus, Walter Fred Hunt (1920)
"Author of "System of Mineralogy," the standard reference work on descriptive mineralogy. chemical composition and the principle of isomorphism. ..."

7. Nature by Nature Publishing Group, Norman Lockyer (1883)
"A CATALOGUE OF CHEMICAL APPARATUS: ILLUSTRATED, CLASSIFIED, descriptive. Demy 8vo. 480 pp., Illustrated with i,600 Woodcuts. Most Complete and Cheapest List ..."

8. The American Naturalist by American Society of Naturalists, Essex Institute (1894)
"329 REMARKS ON SCHULZE'S SYSTEM OF descriptive TERMS.1 BY ALPHEUS ... many naturalists have lost sight of the main aim of descriptive work. ..."

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