having a wide range or extent; comprehensive; extensive: expansive mountain scenery.
(of a person's character or speech) effusive, unrestrained, free, or open: Our expansive host welcomed us warmly.
tending to expand or capable of expanding.
causing expansion: the expansive force of heat.
working by expansion, as an engine.
Psychiatry. marked by an abnormal euphoric state and by delusions of grandeur.

Origin of expansive

First recorded in 1645–55; expans(ion) + -ive
Related formsex·pan·sive·ly, adverbex·pan·sive·ness, nounnon·ex·pan·sive, adjectivenon·ex·pan·sive·ly, adverbnon·ex·pan·sive·ness, nouno·ver·ex·pan·sive, adjectiveo·ver·ex·pan·sive·ly, adverbo·ver·ex·pan·sive·ness, nounun·ex·pan·sive, adjectiveun·ex·pan·sive·ly, adverbun·ex·pan·sive·ness, noun
Can be confusedexpansive expensive (see synonym study at expensive)

Synonyms for expansive

2. sociable, extroverted, outgoing, genial, unreserved; gushy, gushing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for expansive

Contemporary Examples of expansive

Historical Examples of expansive

  • Imagination has a contracting, as well as an expansive faculty.

  • The woodlands depressed him, but the prairie made him expansive.

    The Night Riders

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • He smoked vigorously for some moments—then made an expansive gesture.

    The Crooked House

    Brandon Fleming

  • Lisbeth came to the door, her expansive figure blocking the way in.

    Auld Licht Idylls

    J. M. Barrie

  • They also have an expansive temperament, are generous and luxurious in all their tastes.

British Dictionary definitions for expansive



able or tending to expand or characterized by expansion
wide; extensive
friendly, open, or talkativean expansive person
grand or extravagantan expansive way of life
psychiatry lacking restraint in the expression of feelings, esp in having delusions of grandeur or being inclined to overvalue oneself or one's work
Derived Formsexpansively, adverbexpansiveness, 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 expansive

1650s, "tending to expand," from Latin expans-, past participle stem of expandere (see expand) + -ive. Related: Expansively; expansiveness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper