in negative


expressing or containing negation or denial: a negative response to the question.
refusing consent, as to a proposal: a negative reply to my request.
expressing refusal to do something: He maintained a negative attitude about cooperating.
prohibitory, as a command or order.
characterized by the absence of distinguishing or marked qualities or features; lacking positive attributes (opposed to positive ): a dull, lifeless, negative character.
lacking in constructiveness, helpfulness, optimism, cooperativeness, or the like: a man of negative viewpoint.
being without rewards, results, or effectiveness: a search of the premises proved negative.
Mathematics, Physics.
involving or noting subtraction; minus.
measured or proceeding in the direction opposite to that which is considered as positive.
Photography. noting an image in which the brightness values of the subject are reproduced so that the lightest areas are shown as the darkest.
of, relating to, or characterized by negative electricity.
indicating a point in a circuit that has a lower potential than that of another point, the current flowing from the point of higher potential to the point of lower potential.
Medicine/Medical. failing to show a positive result in a test for a specific disease caused by either bacteria or viruses.
Chemistry. (of an element or group) tending to gain electrons and become negatively charged; acid.
Physiology. responding in a direction away from the stimulus.
of, relating to, or noting the south pole of a magnet.
Logic. (of a proposition) denying the truth of the predicate with regard to the subject.
a negative statement, answer, word, gesture, etc.: The ship signaled back a negative.
a refusal of assent: to answer a request with a negative.
the negative form of statement.
a person or number of persons arguing against a resolution, statement, etc., especially a team upholding the negative side in a formal debate.
a negative quality or characteristic.
disadvantage; drawback: The plan is generally brilliant, but it has one or two negatives.
a minus sign.
a negative quantity or symbol.
Photography. a negative image, as on a film, used chiefly for making positives.
Electricity. the negative plate or element in a voltaic cell.
Archaic. a veto, or right of veto: The delegation may exercise its negative.
(used to indicate a negative response): “You won't come with us?” “Negative.”
verb (used with object), negatived, negativing.
to deny; contradict.
to refute or disprove (something).
to refuse assent or consent to; veto.
to neutralize or counteract.
(used to indicate disagreement, denial of permission, etc.): Negative, pilot—complete your mission as directed.
in the negative, in the form of a negative response, as a refusal, denial, or disagreement; no: The reply, when it finally came, was in the negative.

1350–1400; < Latin negātīvus denying (see negate, -ive); replacing Middle English negatif (noun and adj.) < Middle French < Latin as above

negatively, adverb
negativeness, negativity, noun
nonnegativity, noun
quasi-negative, adjective
quasi-negatively, adverb

6. uncooperative, antagonistic, hostile. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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World English Dictionary
negative (ˈnɛɡətɪv)
1.  expressing or meaning a refusal or denial: a negative answer
2.  lacking positive or affirmative qualities, such as enthusiasm, interest, or optimism
3.  showing or tending towards opposition or resistance
4.  a.  measured in a direction opposite to that regarded as positive
 b.  having the same magnitude but opposite sense to an equivalent positive quantity
5.  biology indicating movement or growth away from a particular stimulus: negative geotropism
6.  med (of the results of a diagnostic test) indicating absence of the disease or condition for which the test was made
7.  minus another word for minus
8.  physics
 a.  (of an electric charge) having the same polarity as the charge of an electron
 b.  (of a body, system, ion, etc) having a negative electric charge; having an excess of electrons
 c.  (of a point in an electric circuit) having a lower electrical potential than some other point with an assigned zero potential
9.  short for electronegative
10.  of or relating to a photographic negative
11.  logic (of a categorial proposition) denying the satisfaction by the subject of the predicate, as in some men are irrational; no pigs have wings
12.  astrology of, relating to, or governed by the signs of the zodiac of the earth and water classifications, which are thought to be associated with a receptive passive nature
13.  short for Rh negative
14.  a statement or act of denial, refusal, or negation
15.  a negative person or thing
16.  photog a piece of photographic film or a plate, previously exposed and developed, showing an image that, in black-and-white photography, has a reversal of tones. In colour photography the image is in complementary colours to the subject so that blue sky appears yellow, green grass appears purple, etc
17.  physics a negative object, such as a terminal or a plate in a voltaic cell
18.  a sentence or other linguistic element with a negative meaning, as the English word not
19.  a quantity less than zero or a quantity to be subtracted
20.  logic a negative proposition
21.  archaic the right of veto
22.  in the negative indicating denial or refusal
sentence substitute
23.  (esp in military communications) a signal code word for no
24.  to deny or nullify; negate
25.  to show to be false; disprove
26.  to refuse to consent to or approve of: the proposal was negatived

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

c.1400, from O.Fr. negatif (fem. negative), 13c., from L. negativus, from negare (see deny). The electricity sense is from 1799. The noun is c.1380 in the sense "a prohibition;" in the photographic sense first recorded 1853. Negativism is 1824 as "the policy of opposition;"
in a psychological sense, it is attested from 1892.
"Negative Capability, that is when a man is capable of being in uncertainties, Mysteries, doubts without any irritable reaching after fact and reason." [John Keats, letter, Dec. 21, 1817]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

negative neg·a·tive (něg'ə-tĭv)

  1. Expressing, containing, or consisting of a negation, refusal, or denial.

  2. Marked by failure of response or absence of a reaction.

  3. Not indicating the presence of microorganisms, disease, or a specific condition.

  4. Moving or turning away from a stimulus, such as light.

  5. Relating to or designating an electric charge of the same sign as that of an electron.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
negative   (něg'ə-tĭv)  Pronunciation Key 
  1. Less than zero.

  2. Having the electric charge or voltage less than zero.

  3. Devoid of evidence of a suspected condition or disease, as a diagnostic test.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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