invective was our Word of the Day on 10/05/2016. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of invective in a Sentence
an overbearing, bullying boss who is fond of sending invective e-mails to long-suffering assistants
Origin and Etymology of invective
First Known Use: 15th centurySee Words from the same year
Synonymscontumelious, abusive, opprobrious, scurrile (or scurril), scurrilous, truculent, vitriolic, vituperative, vituperatory
Related Wordsaffronting, insulting, offending, offensive, outrageous, outraging; coarse, crude, dirty, filthy, foul, foulmouthed, gross, indecent, nasty, obscene, potty-mouthed, vulgar; contemptuous, disdainful, scornful; defamatory, libelous (or libellous), scandalous, slanderous; maligning, traducing, vilifying; hateful, malevolent, malicious, spiteful; immoderate, intemperate, unbridled, unrestrained
Near Antonymsmoderate, temperate; deferential, respectful; civil, courteous, gracious, mannerly, polite; discreet, judicious, tempered; encomiastic, laudative, laudatory, praiseful
Definition of invective
Examples of invective in a Sentence
a barrage of racist invective
hurled curses and invective at the driver who heedlessly cut them off in traffic
Recent Examples of invective from the Web
For example, Bryant details how African-American Bostonians were afraid to attend Red Sox games at Fenway for fear of being the targets of racial invective and actual violence.
To be sure, there is always a certain pleasure in watching Jackson do his thing: Glare, grin and then unload with a mouthful of invective, followed by a can of whup-ass.
Gone, too, were the jeering rows of counter protesters, who came to make a stand in the street for tolerance of that diversity but who also spewed their own invective.
The grackle erupted in a stream of gravelly invective.
A virtual lynch mob of online commentators had heaped invective on Carter, calling her a witch who should be locked away for years.
Senator John McCain, a former target of candidate Trump’s invective, acquired the anti-Trump dossier and made sure that the FBI investigated the phony dirt.
But as has been the case for years now, the angry, overwhelmingly black overflow crowd is hurling obscenity-laden invective at the commission—and particularly at Johnson, who is also African American.
The outpouring of invectives was sparked by the arrest last week of 14 residents of Lakewood, N.J., including the rabbi of a congregation, on public assistance fraud charges.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'invective.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Invective originated in the 15th century as an adjective meaning "of, relating to, or characterized by insult or abuse." In the early 16th century, it appeared in print as a noun meaning "an example of abusive speech." Eventually, the noun developed a second sense applying to abusive language as a whole. Invective comes to us from the Middle French word invectif, which in turn derives from Latin invectivus, meaning "reproachful, abusive." (Invectivus comes from Latin invectus, past participle of the verb invehere, one form of which means "to assail with words.") Invective is similar to abuse, but it tends to suggest not only anger and vehemence but verbal and rhetorical skill. It sometimes implies public denunciation, as in "blistering political invective."
First Known Use of invective
Synonymsbillingsgate, fulmination, abuse, obloquy, scurrility, vitriol, vituperation
Related Wordsblackguardism; blasphemy, curse, execration, imprecation, malediction, profanity; epithet, insult, put-down, slur; expletive, swearword; aspersion, bad-mouthing, belittlement, disparagement, revilement, vilification; castigation, chastisement, criticism, excoriation, opprobrium, rebuke, reprimand, reproof; broadside, diatribe, harangue, polemic, tirade
Near Antonymsacclaim, applause, commendation, praise; compliments, congratulations, endearments, felicitations; adulation, blarney, flattery, overpraise, soft soap
Synonym Discussion of invective
- scathing verbal abuse
- a torrent of vituperation
- blistering political invective
- subjected to obloquy and derision
- directed a stream of billingsgate at the cabdriver
INVECTIVE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of invective for English Language Learners
: harsh or insulting words : rude and angry language
Seen and Heard
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