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See more synonyms for inventive on Thesaurus.com
  1. apt at inventing, devising, or contriving.
  2. apt at creating with the imagination.
  3. having the function of inventing.
  4. pertaining to, involving, or showing invention.
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Origin of inventive

1400–50; invent + -ive; replacing late Middle English inventif < Middle French
Related formsin·ven·tive·ly, adverbin·ven·tive·ness, nounpre·in·ven·tive, adjectiveun·in·ven·tive, adjectiveun·in·ven·tive·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for inventive

ingenious, imaginative, gifted, innovative, original, resourceful, adroit, artistic, avant-garde, constructive, fertile, formative, fruitful, inspired, productive, teeming, innovatory, poetical, causative, demiurgic

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Historical Examples of inventive

British Dictionary definitions for inventive


  1. skilled or quick at contriving; ingenious; resourceful
  2. characterized by inventive skillan inventive programme of work
  3. of or relating to invention
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Derived Formsinventively, adverbinventiveness, 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 inventive


early 15c., "skilled in invention," from Old French inventif (15c.), from Latin invent-, past participle stem of invenire (see invention). Related: Inventively; inventiveness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper