9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[suh g-jes-tiv, suh-] /səgˈdʒɛs tɪv, sə-/
that suggests; referring to other thoughts, persons, etc.:
His recommendation was suggestive of his boss's thinking.
rich in suggestions or ideas:
a suggestive critical essay.
evocative; presented partially rather than in detail.
that suggests or implies something improper or indecent; risqué:
suggestive remarks.
Origin of suggestive
1625-35; suggest + -ive
Related forms
suggestively, adverb
suggestiveness, noun
nonsuggestive, adjective
nonsuggestively, adverb
nonsuggestiveness, noun
presuggestive, adjective
unsuggestive, adjective
unsuggestively, adverb
unsuggestiveness, noun
1. See expressive. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for suggestive
  • Maria's recipe and explanation for the drink's suggestive name follow.
  • When they felt a suggestive breeze wafting from a pile of loose rubble, they knew there was a chamber beyond.
  • My images tend to be descriptive, but this was suggestive, leaving much to the imagination while still speaking of place.
  • The audio was suggestive of two ivory-bills rapping on wood.
  • The preliminary results are suggestive of a linkage between the two atmospheric events but the causal mechanism is still unclear.
  • The categories absent from these surveys are powerfully suggestive of what is missing in rating colleges.
  • It is important to acknowledge that these data are preliminary and correlational in nature, and as such are only suggestive.
  • Still, enough is known about string theory that there are some suggestive connections to our world.
  • All this is rather suggestive of a large test program to unravel the synesthetic roles of individual senses in specific tasks.
  • Therefore it is suggestive of the hypothesis that either one comes from the other or they have the same source.
British Dictionary definitions for suggestive


(postpositive) foll by of. conveying a hint (of something): this painting is suggestive of a hot summer day
tending to suggest something improper or indecent
able or liable to suggest an idea, plan, etc
Derived Forms
suggestively, adverb
suggestiveness, 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
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Word Origin and History for suggestive

1630s, "conveying a hint," from suggest + -ive. Specifically as a faintly euphemistic reference to proposals of indecent behavior, from 1888. Related: Suggestively; suggestiveness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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