Definition of invective in US English:

invective

noun

  • Insulting, abusive, or highly critical language.

    ‘he let out a stream of invective’
    • ‘Both load up their arguments with gobs of personal invective, which also makes me suspicious of their arguments.’
    • ‘It didn't help, of course, not really, but at least there were no innocent bystanders around to suffer my invective.’
    • ‘He has blown onto the scene in a torrent of invective, firing broadside after broadside at the crumbling bastions of public morality.’
    • ‘Even the thought of it unleashes a stream of invective.’
    • ‘As is the custom at the Star Tribune, the editorial was long on invective and short on facts.’
    • ‘Soccer worldwide makes a science of invective against match officials after any game turning decision goes against them.’
    • ‘She didn't understand this so hurled another stream of invective at me.’
    • ‘Mr Moore fired up the young crowd with a potent combination of satire, humour, invective and righteous anger.’
    • ‘Rarely have I read a more bitter, laudably splenetic piece of invective.’
    • ‘John is old and waiting to die but the prospect of death hasn't dulled his appetite for invective or his irreverence for the great and the good.’
    • ‘There's a long road ahead of us, and invective at this stage doesn't help us in any way.’
    • ‘After reading your invective harangue I've only one question: What would you know of polite circles?’
    • ‘A skillful public speaker who mixed invective with humour, he did not disappoint the crowd of about 500.’
    • ‘The wilful Welshman was quick to test his new manager, reacting to that substitution at The Valley with a stream of invective.’
    • ‘The appointed writer for the day polishes them up with the appropriate invective and posts them.’
    • ‘The satire is so laden with invective and is so dense that I wish there was an annotated version of this book to read which would make it much easier to read.’
    • ‘Coming across like a crank, or ranting and throwing around exaggerated invective, is another.’
    • ‘The thing about Jo, and she's so graceful with it, is that she gets more bile and invective than any other comic because she's a woman.’
    • ‘We've all hurled invective into voicemail's dead ears as it runs through its unholy litanies.’
    • ‘News reaches me, however, of referees fighting back against what seems to be a tidal wave of invective and abuse hurled in their direction.’
    abuse, insults, vituperation, expletives, swear words, swearing, curses, bad language, foul language
    View synonyms

Origin

Late Middle English (originally as an adjective meaning ‘reviling, abusive’): from Old French invectif, -ive, from late Latin invectivus ‘attacking’, from invehere (see inveigh). The noun is from late Latin invectiva (oratio) ‘abusive or censorious (language)’.

Pronunciation

invective

/inˈvektiv//ɪnˈvɛktɪv/