Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary


adjective hor·ta·tive \ˈhȯr-tə-tiv\

Definition of hortative

  1. :  giving exhortation :  advisory

hortatively adverb

Did You Know?

We give nothing so freely as advice, observed French writer Duc de La Rochefoucauld in 1665. "Hortative" and "exhort" (meaning "to urge earnestly") are two words that testify to our eagerness to counsel others. Both trace to Latin hortari, meaning "to urge." "Hortative" has been used as both a noun (meaning "an advisory comment") and an adjective since the 17th century, but the noun is now extremely rare. You may also encounter the adjectives "hortatory," "exhortatory," and "exhortative," all of which have the same meaning as "hortative."

Origin of hortative

Late Latin hortativus, from Latin hortatus, past participle of hortari to urge — more at yearn

First Known Use: 1623

Rhymes with hortative

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up hortative? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to manage or play awkwardly

Get Word of the Day daily email!