- 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.
Origin of abusive
Examples from the Web for abusively
I was told that he is still talking angrily and abusively of us, and I was indignant.War's Brighter Side
We know men who have what may be styled, and what sometimes is abusively styled, a double life.The Will to Doubt
Alfred H. Lloyd
He is neither piously inclined, nor hysterically fearful, nor abusively rebellious—he simply waits his fate.My Experiences as an Executioner
Even upon an Assembly numerically limited, this innovation would have told most abusively.
- characterized by insulting or coarse language
- characterized by maltreatment
- incorrectly used; corrupt
Word Origin and History for abusively
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.