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[per-swey-siv, -ziv] /pərˈsweɪ sɪv, -zɪv/
able, fitted, or intended to persuade:
a very persuasive argument.
something that persuades; inducement.
Origin of persuasive
First recorded in 1580-90, persuasive is from the Medieval Latin word persuāsīvus. See persuasible, -ive
Related forms
persuasively, adverb
persuasiveness, noun
nonpersuasive, adjective
nonpersuasively, adverb
nonpersuasiveness, noun
prepersuasive, adjective
unpersuasive, adjective
unpersuasively, adverb
unpersuasiveness, noun
1. convincing, compelling, forceful. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for persuasive
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • persuasive is the voice of Vice, That spreads the insidious snare.

    Philothea Lydia Maria Child
  • "Don't you come now, dear," she advised him, in that persuasive voice of hers.

    Meadow Grass Alice Brown
  • "The only pattern of exactly its sort and color," said the persuasive voice of Pat.

    The Widow O'Callaghan's Boys Gulielma Zollinger
  • What makes these patients so persuasive is the fact that they are themselves persuaded.

    The Sexual Question August Forel
  • He was dignified and suave and gracious, also persuasive when he chose to be.

    Thankful's Inheritance Joseph C. Lincoln
British Dictionary definitions for persuasive


having the power or ability to persuade; tending to persuade: a persuasive salesman
Derived Forms
persuasively, adverb
persuasiveness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for persuasive

1580s, from Middle French persuasif, from Medieval Latin persuasivus, from Latin persuas-, past participle stem of persuadere "persuade, convince" (see persuasion). Related: Persuasively; persuasiveness. Replaced earlier persuasible in this sense (see persuadable).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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