expressive

adjective
ex·pres·sive | \ ik-ˈspre-siv \

Definition of expressive 

1 : of or relating to expression the expressive function of language

2 : serving to express, utter, or represent foul and novel terms expressive of rage —H. G. Wells

3 : effectively conveying meaning or feeling an expressive silence expressive line drawings

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Other words from expressive

expressively adverb
expressiveness noun

Examples of expressive in a Sentence

the expressive function of language the teacher's expressive sigh showed that she had heard that excuse many times before

Recent Examples on the Web

Tillery’s soulful voice blends smoothly with the expressive guitar work of Geezay to create an eclectic spectrum of folk, neo-soul, funk and pop. Jeff Milo, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit music: Best bets for the weekend include Virginia Violet, Whiskey Charmers," 10 May 2018 Thoroughbreds also marks the final role of the late Anton Yelchin, who delivers the film’s sole expressive performance. Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader, "Crime / Film Thoroughbreds is a handsomely understated drama about awful people," 20 Mar. 2018 Mercury governs communication, and when this expressive planet reverses, be sure to read the fine print. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What July's Aquarius Horoscope Means for You," 29 June 2018 The expressive mournfulness of Hall’s pieces for The Atlantic makes them appropriate reading in the aftermath of his passing. Annika Neklason, The Atlantic, "What Donald Hall Understood About Death," 26 June 2018 Needleman delivered the solo part with her usual unflappable technique and golden tone, spinning out deeply expressive phrases in the concerto’s touching, time-suspending close. Tim Smith, baltimoresun.com, "BSO New Music Festival filled with eclectic works, electric performances," 26 June 2018 So when the boom drops in the poignant finale, with its haunting fade to black, the symphony’s expressive course registers all the more keenly. Joshua Kosman, SFChronicle.com, "CD review: Tchaikovsky, Symphony No. 6," 20 June 2018 Rita Joe, playing the role originated by Viola Davis, uses her expressive face and voice to communicate Vera’s torn nature as a woman who has been burned and thus expects the worst but who can’t help hoping for love’s redemption. Christine Dolen, miamiherald, "'Seven Guitars' a riveting revival of August Wilson's take on black life in the 20th century," 12 June 2018 The All-New Kona electric carries the same expressive design and 'go-anywhere' attitude of the regular Kona. G. Chambers Williams Iii, Houston Chronicle, "All-new Kona: Small crossover joins Hyundai lineup, starts at $19,500," 5 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'expressive.' 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 expressive

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

3 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for expressive

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

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More Definitions for expressive

expressive

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of expressive

: showing emotions and feelings clearly and openly

: showing or expressing something

: of or relating to expression

expressive

adjective
ex·pres·sive | \ ik-ˈspre-siv \

Kids Definition of expressive

1 : showing emotions : full of expression expressive eyes

2 : making something known Her story is expressive of her mood.

Other words from expressive

expressively adverb

expressive

adjective
ex·pres·sive

Legal Definition of expressive 

1 : of or relating to expression

2 : serving to express or represent expressive conduct protected by the First Amendment

Other words from expressive

expressively adverb
expressiveness noun

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Comments on expressive

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occurring twice a year or every two years

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