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See more synonyms for receptive on Thesaurus.com
  1. having the quality of receiving, taking in, or admitting.
  2. able or quick to receive knowledge, ideas, etc.: a receptive mind.
  3. willing or inclined to receive suggestions, offers, etc., with favor: a receptive listener.
  4. of or relating to reception or receptors: a receptive end organ.
  5. (in language learning) of or relating to the language skills of listening and reading (opposed to productive).
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Origin of receptive

From the Medieval Latin word receptīvus, dating back to 1540–50. See reception, -ive
Related formsre·cep·tive·ly, adverbre·cep·tiv·i·ty [ree-sep-tiv-i-tee] /ˌri sɛpˈtɪv ɪ ti/, re·cep·tive·ness, nounnon·re·cep·tive, adjectivenon·re·cep·tive·ly, adverbnon·re·cep·tive·ness, nounnon·re·cep·tiv·i·ty, nounun·re·cep·tive, adjectiveun·re·cep·tive·ly, adverbun·re·cep·tive·ness, nounun·re·cep·tiv·i·ty, noun

Synonyms for receptive

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

Related Words for receptiveness

responsiveness, impartiality, observance, acceptance, understanding, interest, receptivity, tolerance

Examples from the Web for receptiveness

Historical Examples of receptiveness

  • In the days of their youth it was natural, but the receptiveness of youth has departed, and they cannot see.

    Jennie Gerhardt

    Theodore Dreiser

  • Their earnestness and receptiveness were my great help and reward in my venture.

  • But the silence seemed now to hold a new element—the element of receptiveness.

    The Furnace

    Rose Macaulay

  • The height of the plane of absorption depends on the state of receptiveness of the hypnotist more than the subject.

    Professor Huskins

    Lettie M. Cummings

  • The condition is one of excitation and receptiveness, where art may speak and we shall understand.

    Emerson and Other Essays

    John Jay Chapman

British Dictionary definitions for receptiveness


  1. able to apprehend quickly
  2. tending to receive new ideas or suggestions favourably
  3. able to hold or receive
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Derived Formsreceptively, adverbreceptivity (ˌriːsɛpˈtɪvɪtɪ) or receptiveness, 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 receptiveness



1540s, from Medieval Latin receptivus, from Latin recipere (see receive). Related: Receptivity.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper