fic·​tive ˈfik-tiv How to pronounce fictive (audio)
: not genuine : feigned
: of, relating to, or capable of imaginative creation
: of, relating to, or having the characteristics of fiction : fictional
fictively adverb
fictiveness noun

Examples of fictive in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web War onscreen, whether fictive or documentary, is often a sort of highlight reel: the excitement and terror of battle, cities in flames, the devastated aftermath. Dennis Harvey, Variety, 13 Nov. 2023 One trait, though, might bond them: Both fictive and palpable monsters are hated. Mikal Gilmore, Rolling Stone, 31 Oct. 2023 Again, Eng—who was born in Penang in 1972, of Straits Chinese ancestry—nicely splices the historical record with various fictive weavings. James Wood, The New Yorker, 6 Nov. 2023 Jerry West demanded a retraction and an apology from HBO over the overheated, fictive way he is depicted. Kurt Streeter, New York Times, 25 Apr. 2022 It’s written in an epistolary style, and I was taken by how the writing itself uses spelling, grammar, punctuation and diction to indicate the rise and loss of the fictive author’s cognitive skills, reflecting the story line. New York Times, 4 May 2023 Naturally, this is often fictive, but that matters little. Razib Khan, Discover Magazine, 30 Nov. 2022 But there is a supernatural quality at play in all the sounds and sighs of Belle and Sebastian’s music, and there is a permanent fictive ingredient in the real-life Murdoch that seems to lend him the ability to access impossible avenues into woe and love and confusion. Mina Tavakoli, Washington Post, 17 Jan. 2023 Finally, the best part: Wild critiques are allowed—the very point of a reality show is to engender conversation at the intersection of fascination and disgust, followed by online stalking of its stars, texting your friends the ancillary speculation and gossip in its fictive-reality universe. Jean Chen Ho, Harper's BAZAAR, 17 Feb. 2021 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'fictive.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


borrowed from Medieval Latin fictīvus "imaginative, imaginary," from Latin fictus, past participle of fingere "to mold, fashion, make a likeness of, pretend to be" + -īvus -ive — more at feign

First Known Use

1612, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of fictive was in 1612

Dictionary Entries Near fictive

Cite this Entry

“Fictive.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Dec. 2023.

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