Abusive



using, containing, or characterized by harshly or coarsely insulting language:
an abusive author; abusive remarks.
treating badly or injuriously; mistreating, especially physically:
his abusive handling of the horse.
wrongly used; corrupt:
an abusive exercise of power.
Contemporary Examples

Mary Williams filed an appeal to the IRS in tax court last year, blaming her “controlling, abusive” husband for the problem.
Patients Screwed in Spine Surgery ‘Scam’ The Center for Investigative Reporting November 2, 2014

Gruelle’s story highlights the overlooked fact that leaving an abusive relationship can be lethal.
The Worst Question for Abuse Victims Emily Shire October 19, 2014

Some ran away from abusive families and fell into the clutches of traffickers they met on the road.
The Sex-Slave Rescuer Michelle Goldberg March 2, 2010

Suffering a brain injury as a result of gang violence or an abusive home is very different than one on the football field.
Study Says Half of Jailed NYC Teens Have History of Brain Injury Dr. Anand Veeravagu, MD, Tej Azad April 21, 2014

His mother was English, but his father was Irish-American, an abusive character with an intimidating presence.
On Stage as Gore Vidal Nicholas Wapshott January 10, 2009

Historical Examples

They were not only plain but abusive, and he complained bitterly to Hamar.
The Sorcery Club Elliott O’Donnell

You are abusive, Ctesippus, said Dionysodorus, you are abusive!
Euthydemus Plato

But, strange to say, in spite of his being so abusive, his eyes wandered about uneasily.
Virgin Soil Ivan S. Turgenev

The deputy followed me, indulging in a tirade of most abusive language.
The Prison Chaplaincy, And Its Experiences Hosea Quinby

They are rather names of disease, for they express some element in excess, some dangerous and abusive exaggeration.
Amiel’s Journal Henri-Frdric Amiel

adjective
characterized by insulting or coarse language
characterized by maltreatment
incorrectly used; corrupt
adj.

1530s (implied in abusively), originally “improper,” from Middle French abusif, from Latin abusivus, from abus-, past participle stem of abuti (see abuse (v.)). Meaning “full of abuse” is from 1580s. Abuseful was used 17c., and Shakespeare has abusious (“Taming of the Shrew,” 1594). Related: Abusiveness.

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  • Abusive relationship

    noun a state of affairs between two people characterized by wrong or improper action, either physical or verbal Examples If you feel you are in an abusive relationship, take it seriously. Talk to someone; get help. Contemporary Examples She had fallen deeper into depression, feeling that she was hopelessly trapped in an abusive relationship. Whitey […]

  • Abusively

    using, containing, or characterized by harshly or coarsely insulting language: an abusive author; abusive remarks. treating badly or injuriously; mistreating, especially physically: his abusive handling of the horse. wrongly used; corrupt: an abusive exercise of power. Historical Examples We know men who have what may be styled, and what sometimes is abusively styled, a double […]



  • Abusiveness

    using, containing, or characterized by harshly or coarsely insulting language: an abusive author; abusive remarks. treating badly or injuriously; mistreating, especially physically: his abusive handling of the horse. wrongly used; corrupt: an abusive exercise of power. Historical Examples Their crude productions, for the most part, were conspicuous rather for insolence and abusiveness than for logic […]

  • Abut

    to be adjacent; touch or join at the edge or border (often followed by on, upon, or against): This piece of land abuts on a street. to be adjacent to; border on; end at. to support by an . Contemporary Examples There is some debate about how this will affect clinics that abut sidewalks or […]



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