repulsive

adjective
re·​pul·​sive | \ ri-ˈpəl-siv How to pronounce repulsive (audio) \

Definition of repulsive

1 : serving or able to repulse repulsive force
2 : tending to repel or reject : cold, forbidding
3 : arousing aversion or disgust repulsive crimes

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Other Words from repulsive

repulsively adverb
repulsiveness noun

Examples of repulsive in a Sentence

Magnets have a repulsive effect on each other. a repulsive display of shameless flattery that made the embarrassed actor wrinkle his nose in disgust
Recent Examples on the Web This means that there’s a particular separation distance between the quarks that’s ideal: where the repulsive electric forces and the attractive strong force balance out. Ethan Siegel, Forbes, "The Strong Nuclear Force Made Easy: Without Colors Or Group Theory," 20 Apr. 2021 As was typical of Highsmith, she was riveted by what others found repulsive or nauseating. New York Times, "The Many Faces of Patricia Highsmith," 19 Apr. 2021 But by invoking the great replacement theory by name, Carlson took it even further, all but endorsing a repulsive racist and anti-semitic conspiracy theory. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, "No One Is Going to Stop Tucker Carlson," 14 Apr. 2021 Meanwhile, the chefs said that garlic and onion, which normally are excellent bases for many dishes, are often found to be repulsive to patients suffering from altered taste and smell. Dr. Samuel Rothman, ABC News, "Lost taste and smell from COVID-19? A new cookbook aims to help," 10 Apr. 2021 For a man whose difficult upbringing only enhanced his seemingly lifelong drive toward masochism and self-mythologizing, the most repulsive thing about his design years might have been their mediocrity. Sophie Madeline Dess, The Atlantic, "The Brilliance in Francis Bacon’s Early Failures," 25 Mar. 2021 The Frog brothers must prevent a vampire from unleashing an army of his repulsive ilk. Ed Stockly, Los Angeles Times, "Movies on TV this week: James Dean in ‘Giant’ on TCM and more," 2 Apr. 2021 In Britain, his power has only grown since the 2011 phone-hacking scandal that brought down his repulsive tabloid News of the World. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, "Oligarch of the Month: Rupert Murdoch," 2 Apr. 2021 Much harder for many people to accept is the plain but repulsive fact that American housing, roads, transit, parks, and commercial zones are designed to segregate by race. Justin Davidson, Curbed, "MoMA’s First Show on Race and Architecture Chooses Lofty Ideas Over Pragmatism," 2 Apr. 2021

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

1594, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for repulsive

Middle English repulsyve "(in medicine) dissipating collected humors," borrowed from Middle French & Medieval Latin; Middle French repulsif "repelling, dissipating humors," borrowed from Medieval Latin repulsīvus, from Latin repulsus, past participle of repellere "to push away, drive back, fend off" + -īvus -ive — more at repel

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Time Traveler for repulsive

Time Traveler

The first known use of repulsive was in 1594

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Statistics for repulsive

Last Updated

1 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Repulsive.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/repulsive. Accessed 13 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for repulsive

repulsive

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of repulsive

: causing strong dislike or disgust
physics : of or relating to the force that pushes something away from something else

repulsive

adjective
re·​pul·​sive | \ ri-ˈpəl-siv How to pronounce repulsive (audio) \

Kids Definition of repulsive

: causing disgust a repulsive sight

Other Words from repulsive

repulsively adverb
repulsiveness noun

Comments on repulsive

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