OTHER WORDS FOR officious
Origin of officious
words often confused with officious
Official can also be an adjective, and that’s when it’s sometimes confused with officious (which is always an adjective). Like many commonly misunderstood words, officious simply looks and sounds as if it could be a synonym for the word it’s confused with—in this case, official.
Given the meaning of official as a noun, it’s not surprising that its adjective senses relate to authority or authorization—for example, “relating to a position of authority” ( the official sovereignty of the queen ); “issued authoritatively” ( waiting for official instructions ); “authorized to act in a designated capacity” ( the project’s official spokesperson ).
Could the adjective officious be that much different? Well, to borrow one of the preceding examples, if you were “waiting for official instructions,” the last thing you’d want is for someone to show up and give you “ officious instructions.” Why? Because officious people rarely have any official authority whatsoever. In fact, what makes them officious is their inclination to be meddlesome and interfering in a self-appointed sort of way. Officious people deliver unsolicited advice, direction, and services regardless of what may or may not be appropriate, and especially without regard for the wishes of those on the receiving end of their “assistance.”
So, if someone shows up to give you officious instructions, by all means wait for the official instructions instead!
OTHER WORDS FROM officious
WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH officiousofficial, officious (see confusables note at the current entry)
Words nearby officious
How to use officious in a sentence
This will minimize your contact with the person in question and, as an added bonus, annoy her as being bureaucratic and officious.Miss Manners: Bumping up wedding doesn’t require friend’s permission|Judith Martin, Nicholas Martin, Jacobina Martin|March 18, 2021|Washington Post
Catton never shows, she tells, wagging on in the most officious way.
His likely successor, Ayman al-Zawahri, is cold, plodding, and officious.
The officious friend joined the family too, and he held up his hands in horror when he heard of it.The Soldier of the Valley|Nelson Lloyd
But she made herself so intensely and disagreeably officious that his patience was sorely tried.Elster's Folly|Mrs. Henry Wood
The report was merely the outcome of the officious meddling of his physician, Addington, and one of Bute's friends.The Political History of England - Vol. X.|William Hunt
It had been moved by officious servants; doubtless the contents had been put in the wardrobe.
With my officious informant, I had every inclination to pick a quarrel.The Battle of New Orleans|Zachary F. Smith