Definition of illative in US English:



  • 1Of the nature of or stating an inference.

    • ‘The word ‘world,’ or cosmos, in the original language of the New Testament, is not an illative term.’
    1. 1.1 Proceeding by inference.
      • ‘Aquino tries to strengthen Newman's position by relocating his illative sense from the individual to communities of informed judgment.’
      • ‘The theory TRC is an illative theory, in the sense that it can encode notions of propositional logic.’
  • 2Grammar
    Relating to or denoting a case of nouns in some languages used to express motion into something.

    • ‘The illative case, denoting direction of movement, is rare in modern standard Lithuanian, although it's used in the common spoken language.’


  • The illative case, or a word in this case.

    • ‘The illative is used selectively and usually as an adverb of place, but in some dialects of Lithuanian, all four locatives are still in use.’


Late 16th century: from Latin illativus, from illat- ‘brought in’ (see illation).