vindictive

adjective
vin·​dic·​tive | \ vin-ˈdik-tiv How to pronounce vindictive (audio) \

Definition of vindictive

1a : disposed to seek revenge : vengeful
b : intended for or involving revenge
2 : intended to cause anguish or hurt : spiteful

Other Words from vindictive

vindictively adverb
vindictiveness noun

Synonyms for vindictive

Synonyms

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Examples of vindictive in a Sentence

Well, maybe actually waging vendettas is a bad idea, but to be known for your vindictiveness can be a great advantage, for then people will take care not to cross you. And maybe the surest way of acquiring a reputation for vindictiveness is actually to be vindictive. — David Papineau, New York Times Book Review, 11 May 1997 And though his [John Simon's] caustic wit can sometimes sound more personally vindictive than objectively critical, it allows him to plow through a lot of literary pretentiousness. — Andrea Barnet, New York Times Book Review, 19 Mar. 1989 The bear, seen in many aspects as humanlike, was subject to ambivalent attitudes: mainly, he was seen as a stand-in for benevolent supernaturals, but sometimes also as a dangerous and at times a vindictive and harmful one. — William W. Fitzhugh & Aron Crowell, Crossroads of Continents, 1988 A machine gun lashed at him from across the river.  … In the darkness, it spat a vindictive white light like an acetylene torch, and its sound was terrifying. — Norman Mailer, The Naked and the Dead, 1948 In observing so long a silence I have been influenced much more by a vindictive purpose,—a purpose to punish you for your suspicion that I could possibly feel myself hurt or offended by any critical suggestion of yours … — William Cowper 26 Feb. 1791, in William Cowper's Letters, Edward Verrall Lucas, editor1924 It is not true that suffering ennobles the character; happiness does that sometimes, but suffering, for the most part, makes men petty and vindictive. — W. Somerset Maugham, The Moon and Sixpence, 1919 be careful not to annoy the vindictive old woman who lives down the street See More
Recent Examples on the Web Rather, Attorney General Nessel and her political appointee Solicitor General Fadwa Hammoud staged a self-interested, vindictive, wasteful, and politically motivated prosecution. Michael I. Krauss, Forbes, 28 June 2022 Like so many millennials, Olivia Rodrigo’s 2021 album, Sour, rekindled my aural appreciation for angry, vindictive, vitriolic music. Katy Kelleher, refinery29.com, 13 July 2022 With her scorned, vindictive suitor intent on taking her father's throne, the princess must protect her family and save the kingdom. Travis Bean, Forbes, 1 July 2022 After rejecting Mosby’s first attempt to have the charges dismissed on the grounds of vindictive prosecution, U.S. District Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby earlier this month allowed the two-term Democrat’s new arguments to go forward. Alex Mann, Baltimore Sun, 30 June 2022 Vexed, Julia summons an old school chum, Selina Dalton (Freida Pinto), and enlists her in a vindictive plot to beguile Malcolm and then break his heart as payback. Natalia Winkelman, BostonGlobe.com, 29 June 2022 There are many who have said it, in vindictive responses and Twitter threads. Los Angeles Times, 27 June 2022 During the debate over the Colorado bill, opponents argued that the law would allow vindictive people to take guns away from others for no good reason. Markian Hawryluk, CNN, 27 June 2022 LIV Golf, run by Greg Norman and funded by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, responded to the tour’s decision by calling it vindictive and divisive. Doug Ferguson, Anchorage Daily News, 9 June 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'vindictive.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of vindictive

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for vindictive

Latin vindicta revenge, vindication, from vindicare

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Time Traveler for vindictive

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

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Dictionary Entries Near vindictive

vindicatory

vindictive

vindictive damages

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Last Updated

3 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Vindictive.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/vindictive. Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for vindictive

vindictive

adjective
vin·​dic·​tive | \ vin-ˈdik-tiv How to pronounce vindictive (audio) \

Kids Definition of vindictive

1 : likely to seek revenge a vindictive person
2 : meant to be harmful vindictive remarks

More from Merriam-Webster on vindictive

Nglish: Translation of vindictive for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vindictive for Arabic Speakers

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