Skip to main content

Vaughan's Vocabulary

January 19, 2013


I recently found a website on which 965 words that end in “ive” are alphabetically listed. You can click each word and see its definition. To find this website, Google “List all words ending in ive.”  Here are five from the list. Let me know your score (80 or 100 is an A).
1. pervasive (per-VAY-siv)
A. diffused throughout every part
B. evil
C. innocuous
D. None of the above

2. evasive (e-VAY-siv)
A. tending to avoid commitment
B. tending to vanish like vapor
C. hard, abrasive
D. sinewy

No. 1, pervasive, is A. No. 2, evasive, is A.

3. elusive (ee-LOU-siv)
A. murky
B. hot
C. bright
D. tending to evade grasp or pursuit

4. adumbrative (a-DUM-brah-tiv)
A. elevated
B. faintly representing; typical
C. preachy
D. adventurous

5. A style of delivery used in oratorios and operas in which a singer adopts the rhythms of speech is a/an
A. recitative (re-suh-tuh-TEEVE).
B. emotive (e-MOE-tiv).
C. tussive (TUH-siv)
D. endive (EN-dive)

No. 3, elusive, is D. No. 4, adumbrative (give the first two syllables the sound of Adam), is B. If something is darkened or concealed partially, it is adumbrated. I remember Alfred Hitchcock’s adumbrated image each Saturday night on CBS. The last one is recitative. Example: Don Jose declares his love for Carmen in an impassioned recitative.

Last week’s mystery word is billet.

This week’s mystery word also ends in “ive.” Use this adjective to describe someone who tends to acquire and own (often greedily).

Don R. Vaughan, Ph.D. in Mass Communication, is a professor at East Miss. Community College. Contact him at:

View more articles in:

Latest Videos

Tanner Fant of Starkville , Miss. will travel to Mobile, Ala. on Sunday, June 14 to participate in the 58th...
Drinking a beverage that tastes delicious and has good nutritional value is like having your cake and eating it, too.
Pasta, bread, pizza crusts, peanut butter, fried foods, beef, even certain types of chips — these are all foods that...
The memories of April 21, 2008 when we went to the Boston Marathon still lingered in our hearts and souls on April 15...
Emily Jones Deluded Diva My neighbor, (I'll call her Brenda for the sake of anonymity), is one of the best things that...


Premium Drupal Themes by Adaptivethemes