- eluding or failing to allow for or accommodate a clear perception or complete mental grasp; hard to express or define: an elusive concept.
- cleverly or skillfully evasive: a fish too elusive to catch.
- difficult to find: hoping that elusive donors will finally contribute.
Also e·lu·so·ry [ih-loo-suh-ree, -zuh-] /ɪˈlu sə ri, -zə-/.
Origin of elusive
SynonymsSee more synonyms for elusive on Thesaurus.com
2. tricky, slippery, shifty; puzzling, baffling.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for elusiveness
Of course, the innate watchability of these socialites is matched only by their elusiveness.The Surreal Genius of Bravo’s Rich Kids Docudrama ‘NYC Prep’
April 23, 2014
One of the defining aspects of the uprising is its elusiveness.Blindsided in Brazil
June 20, 2013
The elusiveness at Obama's core, which once served him so well, has turned back on itself, arousing suspicions.The Inescapable President
September 18, 2009
His Alpine climbing had taught him the elusiveness of isolated peaks of knowledge.Mountain Meditations
Not an adventurer or escroc in Europe could compare with him in elusiveness.The Minister of Evil
William Le Queux
"Desire-compelling, with the elusiveness of the rainbow's end," was another.Lady Bountiful
George A. Birmingham
She possessed an elusiveness that captivates more surely than beauty.Captain Desmond, V.C.
The seat of the difficulty is in the elusiveness of the material.English: Composition and Literature
W. F. (William Franklin) Webster
- difficult to catchan elusive thief
- preferring or living in solitude and anonymity
- difficult to rememberan elusive thought
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 elusiveness
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper