aggressive

adjective
ag·​gres·​sive | \ ə-ˈgre-siv How to pronounce aggressive (audio) \

Definition of aggressive

1a : tending toward or exhibiting aggression aggressive behavior
b : marked by combative readiness an aggressive fighter
2a : marked by obtrusive energy and self-assertiveness a rude, aggressive personality
b : marked by driving forceful energy or initiative : enterprising an aggressive salesman
3 : strong or emphatic in effect or intent aggressive colors aggressive flavors
4 : growing, developing, or spreading rapidly aggressive bone tumors
5 : more severe, intensive, or comprehensive than usual especially in dosage or extent aggressive chemotherapy

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from aggressive

aggressively adverb
aggressiveness noun
aggressivity \ ˌa-​ˌgre-​ˈsi-​və-​tē How to pronounce aggressivity (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for aggressive

aggressive, militant, assertive, self-assertive mean obtrusively energetic especially in pursuing particular goals. aggressive implies a disposition to dominate often in disregard of others' rights or in determined and energetic pursuit of one's ends. aggressive in his business dealings militant also implies a fighting disposition but suggests not self-seeking but devotion to a cause, movement, or principle. militant protesters rallied against the new law assertive suggests bold self-confidence in expression of opinion. the more assertive speakers dominated the forum self-assertive connotes forwardness or brash self-confidence. a self-assertive young upstart

Examples of aggressive in a Sentence

He started to get aggressive and began to shout. an aggressive lawyer whose tactics have made people angry The team plays a very aggressive style of defense. The company took aggressive steps to prevent illegal use of their equipment. The publisher has been very aggressive in promoting the book. The city began an aggressive campaign to encourage recycling. an aggressive form of cancer
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

Maryland and especially its biggest city, Baltimore, have long been aggressive in using powers of condemnation to assemble land for subsidized megaprojects. Walter Olson, WSJ, "Will Baltimore Make Off With the Races?," 24 Mar. 2019 That night at the after party, Colton bonds with Katie while Tracy and Demi bicker about who is more passive aggressive. Anna Moeslein, Glamour, "The Bachelor Season 23, Episode 3 Recap: Elyse for Bachelorette?," 21 Jan. 2019 Society may paint girls of color in certain ways: Loud, aggressive, hypersexual, greedy, angry, lazy, dumb. Naomi Wadler, Teen Vogue, "Naomi Wadler on Standing in Her Power One Year After the March for Our Lives," 24 Mar. 2019 Even Rienda concedes that the vegan label can have a vaguely aggressive, judgmental undertone, particularly when it’s applied to fashion. Emily Farra, Vogue, "Vegan Fashion Week Is Coming to L.A.—And It’s About a Lot More Than Eco Leather and Faux Fur," 14 Jan. 2019 McCain was diagnosed with glioblastoma in July 2017 and received aggressive treatment in his home state of Arizona. Vox Staff, Vox, "Sen. John McCain dies at 81," 26 Aug. 2018 Angel Perez, 60, has been in the intensive care unit of Cooper University Hospital since July 4, undergoing aggressive treatment with antibiotics in hopes of saving his arms and legs, said daughter Dilena Perez-Dilan. Tom Avril, Philly.com, "N.J. man infected with flesh-eating bacteria while crabbing, could lose limbs," 10 July 2018 For decades, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has struggled to combat secretive cliques of deputies who bonded over aggressive, often violent police work and branded themselves with matching tattoos. Joel Rubin, latimes.com, "After decades of problems, new allegations surface of a secret clique within L.A. County Sheriff's Department," 10 July 2018 Some animals can get aggressive when infected with rabies, but that’s not always the case. Tara C. Smith, SELF, "What Happens When You Get Rabies? An Epidemiologist Explains," 24 Jan. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of aggressive

1716, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for aggressive

borrowed from New Latin aggressīvus, from Latin aggressus, past participle of aggredī "to step up to, approach, attack" + -īvus -ive — more at aggress

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about aggressive

Statistics for aggressive

Last Updated

16 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for aggressive

The first known use of aggressive was in 1716

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for aggressive

aggressive

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of aggressive

: ready and willing to fight, argue, etc. : feeling or showing aggression
: using forceful methods to succeed or to do something
: very severe

aggressive

adjective
ag·​gres·​sive | \ ə-ˈgre-siv How to pronounce aggressive (audio) \

Kids Definition of aggressive

1 : showing a readiness to fight or argue an aggressive dog aggressive behavior
2 : engaging in hostile action without reasonable cause an aggressive nation
3 : being forceful in getting things done an overly aggressive salesperson

Other Words from aggressive

aggressively adverb
aggressiveness noun

aggressive

adjective
ag·​gres·​sive | \ ə-ˈgres-iv How to pronounce aggressive (audio) \

Medical Definition of aggressive

1 : tending toward or exhibiting aggression aggressive behavior
2 : growing, developing, or spreading rapidly aggressive bone tumors
3 : more severe, intensive, or comprehensive than usual especially in dosage or extent aggressive chemotherapy aggressive surgical intervention — compare conservative

Other Words from aggressive

aggressively adverb
aggressiveness noun
aggressivity \ ˌag-​ˌre-​ˈsiv-​ət-​ē How to pronounce aggressivity (audio) \ noun, plural aggressivities

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on aggressive

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to make a payment or contribution

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Time Traveler Quiz: Which Word Came First?

  • time traveler quiz which word came first
  • Which came first?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!