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OFFENSIVE

Pronunciation (US): 

 Dictionary entry overview: What does offensive mean? 

OFFENSIVE (noun)
  The noun OFFENSIVE has 1 sense:

1. the action of attacking an enemy

  Familiarity information: OFFENSIVE used as a noun is very rare.


OFFENSIVE (adjective)
  The adjective OFFENSIVE has 7 senses:

1. violating or tending to violate or offend against
2. for the purpose of attack rather than defense
3. causing anger or annoyance
4. morally offensive
5. unpleasant or disgusting especially to the senses
6. of an offensive substitute for inoffensive terminology
7. causing or able to cause nausea

  Familiarity information: OFFENSIVE used as an adjective is common.


 Dictionary entry details 


OFFENSIVE (noun)


Sense 1offensive [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

The action of attacking an enemy

Classified under:

Nouns denoting acts or actions

Synonyms:

offence; offensive; offense

Hypernyms ("offensive" is a kind of...):

military operation; operation (activity by a military or naval force (as a maneuver or campaign))

Hyponyms (each of the following is a kind of "offensive"):

counteroffensive (a large scale offensive (more than a counterattack) undertaken by a defending force to seize the initiative from an attacking force)

dirty war (an offensive conducted by secret police or the military of a regime against revolutionary and terrorist insurgents and marked by the use of kidnapping and torture and murder with civilians often being the victims)

push back; rollback (the act of forcing the enemy to withdraw)


OFFENSIVE (adjective)


Sense 1offensive [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Violating or tending to violate or offend against

Synonyms:

offensive; violative

Context examples:

violative of the principles of liberty / considered such depravity offensive against all laws of humanity

Similar:

offending (offending against or breaking a law or rule)


Sense 2offensive [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

For the purpose of attack rather than defense

Context example:

offensive weapons

Similar:

on the offensive (actively attacking)

marauding; predatory; raiding (characterized by plundering or pillaging or marauding)

antipersonnel (designed to inflict death or personal injury rather than material destruction)

assaultive; attacking (disposed to attack)

hit-and-run; tip-and-run (designed for or consisting of a brief attack followed by a quick escape)

incursive; invading; invasive (involving invasion or aggressive attack)

Also:

hostile (characterized by enmity or ill will)

aggressive (having or showing determination and energetic pursuit of your ends)

Antonym:

defensive (intended or appropriate for defending against or deterring aggression or attack)


Sense 3offensive [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Causing anger or annoyance

Context example:

offensive remarks

Similar:

abusive; insulting; opprobrious; scurrilous (expressing offensive reproach)

Also:

disrespectful (exhibiting lack of respect; rude and discourteous)

harmful (causing or capable of causing harm)

Attribute:

distastefulness; odiousness; offensiveness (the quality of being offensive)

Antonym:

inoffensive (not causing anger or annoyance)


Sense 4offensive [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Morally offensive

Synonyms:

unsavory; unsavoury; offensive

Context examples:

an unsavory reputation / an unsavory scandal

Similar:

odoriferous (morally offensive)


Sense 5offensive [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Unpleasant or disgusting especially to the senses

Context example:

offensive odors

Similar:

rank (very offensive in smell or taste)

objectionable; obnoxious (causing disapproval or protest)

hideous; horrid; horrific; outrageous (grossly offensive to decency or morality; causing horror)

ghoulish; morbid (suggesting the horror of death and decay)

disgustful; disgusting; distasteful; foul; loathly; loathsome; repellant; repellent; repelling; revolting; skanky; wicked; yucky (highly offensive; arousing aversion or disgust)

creepy (annoying and unpleasant)

charnel; ghastly; sepulchral (gruesomely indicative of death or the dead)

abhorrent; detestable; obscene; repugnant; repulsive (offensive to the mind)

verminous (of the nature of vermin; very offensive or repulsive)

scrimy (dirty and disgusting)

Also:

unpalatable (not pleasant or acceptable to the taste or mind)

unpleasant (disagreeable to the senses, to the mind, or feelings)

hateful (evoking or deserving hatred)

evil (morally bad or wrong)

Attribute:

distastefulness; odiousness; offensiveness (the quality of being offensive)

Antonym:

inoffensive (giving no offense)


Sense 6offensive [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Of an offensive substitute for inoffensive terminology

Synonyms:

dysphemistic; offensive

Context example:

'nigger' is a dysphemistic term for 'African-American'


Sense 7offensive [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Causing or able to cause nausea

Synonyms:

sickening; queasy; noisome; nauseous; nauseating; loathsome; vile; offensive

Context examples:

a nauseating smell / nauseous offal / a sickening stench

Similar:

unwholesome (detrimental to physical or moral well-being)


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