adop·​tive | \ ə-ˈdäp-tiv How to pronounce adoptive (audio) \

Definition of adoptive

1 : made or acquired by adoption the adoptive father
2 : of or relating to adoption

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Other Words from adoptive

adoptively adverb

Examples of adoptive in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The decision was cheered by one of the adoptive parents, Melissa Buck of Holt, near Lansing. David Eggert, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Judge: Michigan adoption agencies can turn away LGBT couples," 26 Sep. 2019 Enter Caleb and Catherine Hapstall, siblings who were accused of killing their adoptive parents. Alamin Yohannes,, "How to Get Away With Murder," 25 Sep. 2019 Some of these providers require potential foster care or adoptive parents to share a religious faith or agree to the provider’s statement of faith. Allie Morris,, "Houston archdiocese, seeking foster care contract, challenges LGBT anti-discrimination protections," 15 Nov. 2019 His white adoptive parents, Peter and Amy (Tim Roth and Naomi Watts), dote on him. J.t-j., The Economist, "“Luce” probes race and privilege in America," 12 Nov. 2019 Our hearts and prayers go out to those expectant mothers and hopeful adoptive parents. Robert Anglen, azcentral, "Latter-day Saints Apostle Ronald Rasband calls Paul Petersen's adoption scheme 'sickening'," 10 Nov. 2019 Discounts on the annual entrance passes are available for U.S. military veterans and service members, as well as for foster families and adoptive parents. Cassie Armstrong,, "Give the gift of the great outdoors with an annual pass to Florida’s state parks," 5 Nov. 2019 My friends at Becket represent St. Vincent Catholic Charities, a former foster child, and the adoptive parents of five special-needs kids. David French, National Review, "Once Again, Progressive Anti-Christian Bigotry Carries a Steep Legal Cost," 27 Sep. 2019 Court documents obtained by WISH-TV show that she was evicted for not paying rent in May 2014, less than a year after her adoptive parents left her alone in the apartment. Antonia Noori Farzan, Washington Post, "Police say she abandoned her adopted daughter. She says the girl was actually an adult sociopath.," 17 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'adoptive.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of adoptive

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for adoptive

Middle English adoptif, borrowed from Middle French & Latin; Middle French adoptif, going back to Old French, borrowed from Latin adoptīvus, from adoptāre "to adopt" + -īvus -ive

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Time Traveler for adoptive

Time Traveler

The first known use of adoptive was in the 15th century

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Statistics for adoptive

Last Updated

24 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Adoptive.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 11 December 2019.

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More Definitions for adoptive


How to pronounce adoptive (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of adoptive

used to describe a parent who has adopted a child


adop·​tive | \ ə-ˈdäp-tiv How to pronounce adoptive (audio) \

Legal Definition of adoptive

1a : having adopted an adoptive parent
b : having been adopted an adoptive child
2 : made or acquired by accepting as one's own the words or actions of another to constitute an adoptive admission…defendant must actually understand what was said and have an opportunity to deny itUnited States v. White, 766 F. Supp. 873 (1991)

More from Merriam-Webster on adoptive

Spanish Central: Translation of adoptive

Nglish: Translation of adoptive for Spanish Speakers

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heavy with or as if with moisture

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