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[in-sep-tiv] /ɪnˈsɛp tɪv/
beginning; initial.
Grammar. (of a derived verb, or of an aspect in verb inflection) expressing the beginning of the action indicated by the underlying verb, as Latin verbs in -scō, which generally have inceptive force, as calēscō “become or begin to be hot” from caleō “be hot.”.
noun, Grammar
the inceptive aspect.
a verb in this aspect.
Origin of inceptive
1605-15; < Late Latin inceptīvus. See incept, -ive
Related forms
inceptively, adverb
uninceptive, adjective
uninceptively, adverb
1. inchoative, embryonic, nascent. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for inceptive
Historical Examples
  • What is sometimes called the inceptive future, is expressed thus, "I am going to write;" "I am about to write."

  • This author looks upon circumcision as of purely climatic origin in its inceptive causes.

  • The motives as used in this case are generally well adapted to their respective areas and inceptive axes.

    Industrial Arts Design William H. Varnum
  • How should the units be drawn to be in harmony with the inceptive axis, the contours, and to each other?

    Industrial Arts Design William H. Varnum
  • In the foregoing examples the designs are more or less rigidly balanced over the inceptive axis or axis of symmetry.

    Industrial Arts Design William H. Varnum
  • It is only necessary to have this inceptive axis pass through the enrichment zone of the panel.

    Industrial Arts Design William H. Varnum
  • (d) Locate point of concentration in the zone of enrichment and in the inceptive axis.

    Industrial Arts Design William H. Varnum
  • Free ornament for partly or fully enriched surfaces should be based and centered upon an inceptive axis of the structure.

    Industrial Arts Design William H. Varnum
  • What is the value of an inceptive axis with relation to the unity of a design?

    Industrial Arts Design William H. Varnum
  • (g) Draw leading lines in sympathy with the contours of the panel, the inceptive axis, and the point of concentration.

    Industrial Arts Design William H. Varnum
British Dictionary definitions for inceptive


beginning; incipient; initial
(grammar) Also called inchoative. denoting an aspect of verbs in some languages used to indicate the beginning of an action
  1. the inceptive aspect of verbs
  2. a verb in this aspect
Derived Forms
inceptively, adverb
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
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Word Origin and History for inceptive

1650s, from French inceptif (16c.), from Latin incept-, past participle stem of incipere "to begin" (see inception).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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