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See more synonyms for convulsive on Thesaurus.com
  1. of the nature of or characterized by convulsions or spasms.
  2. producing or accompanied by convulsion: convulsive rage.
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Origin of convulsive

From the Latin word convulsīvus, dating back to 1605–15. See convulse, -ive
Related formscon·vul·sive·ly, adverbcon·vul·sive·ness, nounpost·con·vul·sive, adjectiveun·con·vul·sive, adjectiveun·con·vul·sive·ly, adverbun·con·vul·sive·ness, noun

Synonyms for convulsive

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for convulsive

bumpy, bouncy, meteoric, frenzied, stormy, touchy, hazardous, ugly, violent, tense, fiery, unstable, uncontrollable, feverish, delirious, frantic, rabid, agitated, furious, frenetic

Examples from the Web for convulsive

Contemporary Examples of convulsive

Historical Examples of convulsive

  • Not until there was a convulsive jerk of Dozier's elbow did he stir his folded arms.

  • It never occurred to her that she might be the cause of that convulsive outburst.

  • He was pale as death, and his lips trembled with convulsive motion.

  • "Yes," and as the girl replied a convulsive shudder racked her frame.

    The Monster Men

    Edgar Rice Burroughs

  • He had kept Rosa's hand in a convulsive grasp, and he drew her with him into the eye of the world.

    Meadow Grass

    Alice Brown

Word Origin and History for convulsive


1610s, from French convulsif, from Medieval Latin *convulsivus, from convulsus, past participle of convellere (see convulse (v.)). Related: Convulsively.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

convulsive in Medicine


  1. Characterized by or having the nature of convulsions.
  2. Having or producing convulsions.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.