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See more synonyms for perceptive on Thesaurus.com
  1. having or showing keenness of insight, understanding, or intuition: a perceptive analysis of the problems involved.
  2. having the power or faculty of perceiving.
  3. of, relating to, or showing perception.
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Origin of perceptive

1650–60; < Latin percept(us) (see percept) + -ive
Related formsper·cep·tive·ly, adverbper·cep·tiv·i·ty, per·cep·tive·ness, nounnon·per·cep·tive, adjectivenon·per·cep·tive·ly, adverbnon·per·cep·tive·ness, nounnon·per·cep·tiv·i·ty, nounself-per·cep·tive, adjectivesem·i·per·cep·tive, adjectiveun·per·cep·tive, adjectiveun·per·cep·tive·ly, adverb
Can be confusedperceptible perceptive

Synonyms for perceptive

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for perceptiveness

eye, acumen, keenness, discrimination, insight, understanding, sagacity, wit, penetration, nose, shrewdness, perspicacity, astuteness, judgment, percipience

Examples from the Web for perceptiveness

Historical Examples of perceptiveness

  • He told, too, a good story, which shows the perceptiveness of Indians.

    With Manchesters in the East

    Gerald B. Hurst

  • Bully Rawson, with all his faults, had the saving grace of perceptiveness, wherefore the bright idea remained unpropounded.

  • All this is not Japanese, but from such accident is Japanese art inspired, with its good luck of perceptiveness.

    The Colour of Life

    Alice Meynell

British Dictionary definitions for perceptiveness


  1. quick at perceiving; observant
  2. perceptual
  3. able to perceive
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Derived Formsperceptively, adverbperceptiveness or perceptivity, 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 perceptiveness



1650s, from Latin percept-, past participle stem of percipere (see perceive) + -ive. In reference to intelligence from 1860. From mid-15c. as the name of a type of optical instrument. Related: Perceptively; perceptiveness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

perceptiveness in Medicine


  1. Of or relating to perception.
  2. Having the ability to perceive.
  3. Keenly discerning.
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Related formsper′cep•tivi•ty (pûr′sĕp-tĭvĭ-tē) n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.