from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Marked by excessive eagerness in offering unwanted services or advice to others.
  • adjective Informal; unofficial.
  • adjective Archaic Motivated by the desire to help others.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Doing or ready to do kind offices; attentive; courteous and obliging; hence, friendly, in a general sense.
  • Having a bearing on or connection with official duties, but not formally official.
  • Forward in tendering services; zealous in interposing uninvited in the affairs of others; meddling; obtrusive.
  • Synonyms Impertinent, Officious (see impertinent); Active, Busy. etc. (see active); meddlesome, obtrusive, interfering, intermeddling, pragmatical.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective rare Pertaining to, or being in accordance with, duty.
  • adjective Archaic Disposed to serve; kind; obliging.
  • adjective Importunately interposing services; intermeddling in affairs in which one has no concern; meddlesome.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective obsolete obliging, attentive, eager to please
  • adjective Offensively intrusive or interfering

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective intrusive in a meddling or offensive manner


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Latin officiōsus, obliging, dutiful, from officium, duty; see office.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

16th Century, from Latin officiōsus ("kindly"), from officium ("service").



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  • I always think of the opening of THE SHINING when I hear/read this word. "Officious little prick."

    April 13, 2007