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purposive

[pur-puh-siv]
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adjective
  1. having, showing, or acting with a purpose, intention, or design.
  2. adapted to a purpose or end.
  3. serving some purpose.
  4. determined; resolute.
  5. of or characteristic of purpose.
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Origin of purposive

First recorded in 1850–55; purpose + -ive
Related formspur·pos·ive·ly, adverbpur·pos·ive·ness, nounnon·pur·pos·ive, adjectivenon·pur·pos·ive·ly, adverbnon·pur·pos·ive·ness, nounpre·pur·pos·ive, adjectivesem·i·pur·pos·ive, adjectivesem·i·pur·pos·ive·ly, adverbsem·i·pur·pos·ive·ness, nounun·pur·pos·ive, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

deliberateresolutecalculatedpersistentstrong-willeddeterminedintenseprofitablegoodhelpfuleffectiveconvenientfruitfulpracticalappropriatefavorableproperpragmaticsuitablehandy

Examples from the Web for purposive

Historical Examples

  • Causal effects are sought in a sphere which belongs to purposive values.

    Psychotherapy

    Hugo Mnsterberg

  • I understand his inner life by taking a purposive point of view.

    Psychotherapy

    Hugo Mnsterberg

  • One moves in the purposive sphere, the other in the causal sphere.

    Psychotherapy

    Hugo Mnsterberg

  • According to the older Darwinism the lungs are just as purposive as the corkscrew.

  • Since the ability to live is threatened by this specialization it cannot be purposive.


British Dictionary definitions for purposive

purposive

adjective
  1. relating to, having, or indicating conscious intention
  2. serving a purpose; useful
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Derived Formspurposively, adverbpurposiveness, 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 purposive

adj.

1849, from purpose + -ive.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper