[ ap-ri-hen-siv ]
See synonyms for: apprehensiveapprehensivelyapprehensiveness on

  1. uneasy or fearful about something that might happen: apprehensive for the safety of the mountain climbers.

  2. quick to learn or understand.

  1. perceptive; discerning (usually followed by of).

Origin of apprehensive

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English word from Medieval Latin word apprehēnsīvus.See apprehensible, -ive

Other words from apprehensive

  • ap·pre·hen·sive·ly, adverb
  • ap·pre·hen·sive·ness, noun
  • non·ap·pre·hen·sive, adjective
  • o·ver·ap·pre·hen·sive, adjective
  • o·ver·ap·pre·hen·sive·ly, adverb
  • o·ver·ap·pre·hen·sive·ness, noun
  • pseu·do·ap·pre·hen·sive, adjective
  • pseu·do·ap·pre·hen·sive·ly, adverb
  • un·ap·pre·hen·sive, adjective
  • un·ap·pre·hen·sive·ly, adverb
  • un·ap·pre·hen·sive·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use apprehensive in a sentence

  • And now, not without a bit of apprehensiveness, he let it out.

  • He surveyed his brown fists with a certain apprehensiveness, as though they were dangerous parties over whom he had no control.

  • Her voice was politely remonstrative, with a note of apprehensiveness for the welfare of her mistress.

    The Ghost Breaker | Charles Goddard
  • Anger and apprehensiveness were working twin leverage on the Comas executive.

  • This morbid disposition is the parent of a continual apprehensiveness which is shown upon all sorts of occasions.

British Dictionary definitions for apprehensive


/ (ˌæprɪˈhɛnsɪv) /

  1. fearful or anxious

Derived forms of apprehensive

  • apprehensively, adverb
  • apprehensiveness, 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