[dih-vahy-siv, -vis-iv]


forming or expressing division or distribution.
creating dissension or discord.

Origin of divisive

1590–1600; < Late Latin dīvīsīvus, equivalent to Latin dīvīs(us) (see divisible) + -īvus -ive
Related formsdi·vi·sive·ly, adverbdi·vi·sive·ness, nounnon·di·vi·sive, adjectivenon·di·vi·sive·ly, adverbnon·di·vi·sive·ness, nounsem·i·di·vi·sive, adjectivesem·i·di·vi·sive·ly, adverbsem·i·di·vi·sive·ness, nounun·di·vi·sive, adjectiveun·di·vi·sive·ly, adverbun·di·vi·sive·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for divisiveness

Contemporary Examples of divisiveness

Historical Examples of divisiveness

  • But just because divisiveness is natural, it does not follow that nothing can be done to keep men together.

    Nine O'Clock Talks

    Frederic B. Kellogg

British Dictionary definitions for divisiveness



causing or tending to cause disagreement or dissension
archaic having the quality of distinguishing
Derived Formsdivisively, adverbdivisiveness, 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

Word Origin and History for divisiveness



c.1600, "having a quality of dividing," from Latin divis-, past participle stem of dividere (see divide (v.)) + -ive. Meaning "producing discord" is from 1640s. Related: Divisively; divisiveness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper