American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- adj. Retributive.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Serving as a requital or retribution.
- adj. Of or relating to retribution; of the nature of retribution; involving retribution or repayment.
- adj. of or relating to or having the nature of retribution
- adj. given or inflicted in requital according to merits or deserts
- Compare Latin retributorius worthy of retribution. (Wiktionary)
“Prediction: the Saddam verdict will provoke retributory violence by radical Sunnis, with significant potential for Shi'ite militias to respond via death squads.”
“I have already begun my retributory purposes, as I may call them.”
“And yet, I could understand why Nat Turner would be driven to retaliate against a violent system by retributory violence.”
“From the day when, as young men, both had been aspirants for the imperial throne of Germany and Francis had suffered defeat, the latter had assiduously devoted himself to the retributory task of gaining the ascendancy over his successful rival.”
“Were even the gods not exempt from retributory justice?”
“In violent hands, but deadly sure and retributory.”
“And when Dr. Martineau talks of the "natural penalties for guilt," and adds that "sin being there, it would be simply monstrous that there should be no suffering and would fully justify the despair which now raises its sickly cry of complaint against the retributory wretchedness of human transgression" (_Study_ II., p. 106), the reply is that there are no such things as "_natural_ penalties for guilt.”
“Strange was this retributory fate which had brought these two into the most intimate relations of husband and wife.”
“It must be that God had a retributory end in view in that great event.”
“It is not only a retributory and destructive fire, but a disciplinary and creative process, whose aim is the salvation, through unification, of the entire planet.”
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A roster of adjectives that infrequently surface in typical conversation and writing. Many are dredged from scientific or other technical jargon or sieved from examples of disused archaic forms.
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