il·​lus·​tra·​tive i-ˈlə-strə-tiv How to pronounce illustrative (audio)
ˈi-lə-ˌstrā- How to pronounce illustrative (audio)
: serving, tending, or designed to illustrate
illustrative examples
art that is illustrative of provincial life
illustratively adverb

Examples of illustrative in a Sentence

an illustrative analogy in which the relationship between God and humanity is likened to that between a shepherd and his flock
Recent Examples on the Web The recent election in Senegal provides a telling, illustrative example, as Bloomberg reports. Jeremy Kahn, Fortune, 14 May 2024 His younger sister, Rosemary Kennedy, had been born with intellectual disabilities — and her treatment is illustrative of some of the horrors of the asylum era. Greg Rosalsky, NPR, 16 Apr. 2024 Fox News also did not comment on the report, but the scene was illustrative of the anti-immigrant rhetoric that has frequently been promoted on the right-wing network’s air. Jon Passantino, CNN, 7 Feb. 2024 An Accessible Writer Professor Kahneman propagated his findings with an appealing writing style, using illustrative vignettes with which even lay readers could engage. Robert D. Hershey Jr., New York Times, 27 Mar. 2024 See all Example Sentences for illustrative 

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

Word History

First Known Use

1643, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of illustrative was in 1643

Dictionary Entries Near illustrative

Cite this Entry

“Illustrative.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


il·​lus·​tra·​tive il-ˈəs-trət-iv How to pronounce illustrative (audio)
: serving or meant to illustrate
illustrative examples

More from Merriam-Webster on illustrative

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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