disposed or inclined to revenge; vengeful: a vindictive person.
proceeding from or showing a revengeful spirit: vindictive rumors.

Origin of vindictive

1610–20; < Latin vindict(a) vengeance + -ive
Related formsvin·dic·tive·ly, adverbvin·dic·tive·ness, nounun·vin·dic·tive, adjectiveun·vin·dic·tive·ly, adverbun·vin·dic·tive·ness, noun
Can be confusedvindicatory vindictive

Synonyms for vindictive

Antonyms for vindictive Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for vindictively

brutally, cruelly, maliciously, ruthlessly, venomously

Examples from the Web for vindictively

Contemporary Examples of vindictively

Historical Examples of vindictively

  • "I always said your colonel was a bear," says Miss Massereene, vindictively.

    Molly Bawn

    Margaret Wolfe Hamilton

  • But, it hastens to add, vindictively, 'generally an old or a rude-mannered one.'

  • "'Twould have served 'em right to have gone and left 'em," muttered Benham vindictively.

  • Nicanor came to hate him vindictively, with no reason at all, as he hated all the world just then.

  • Lloyd chuckled so vindictively that Symonds glanced at him in surprise.

    The Lost Despatch

    Natalie Sumner Lincoln

British Dictionary definitions for vindictively



disposed to seek vengeance
characterized by spite or rancour
English law (of damages) in excess of the compensation due to the plaintiff and imposed in punishment of the defendant
Derived Formsvindictively, adverbvindictiveness, noun

Word Origin for vindictive

C17: from Latin vindicta revenge, from vindicāre to vindicate
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 vindictively



1610s, from Latin vindicta "revenge" (see vindication). Related: Vindictively.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper