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

  • adj. Serving or tending to suspend or temporarily stop something.
  • adj. Characterized by or causing suspense.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. That suspends (temporarily stops)
  • adj. Characterized by suspense; suspenseful

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Tending to suspend, or to keep in suspense; causing interruption or delay; uncertain; doubtful.
  • adj. condition (Scots Law), a condition precedent, or a condition without the performance of which the contract can not be completed.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Tending to suspend, or to keep in suspense; causing interruption; uncertain; doubtful; deliberative.
  • Having the power to suspend the operation of something.

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

  • adj. (of a situation) characterized by or causing suspense
  • adj. undecided or characterized by indecisiveness


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Tananarive, for instance, has a trait I've seen far more frequently among women than men: she talks in suspensive sentences, postponing the object for clause after clause, and sometimes sentence after sentence, as if working from the outside in.

    Archive 2009-09-01

  • And when he considered himself as exactly in the same suspensive embarrassment, as a young man of little more than a fortnight's acquaintance, he felt indignantly ashamed of so humiliating a rivalry, and a strong diminution of regret at his present purpose.


  • The affection of Camilla was nearly reciprocal, but her pleasure had no chance of equal participation; nor was the suspensive state of her mind the only impediment; opposite to her in the carriage, and immediately claiming her attention, was Mrs. Mittin.


  • In this suspensive state of mind, to cast himself upon his sagacious friend seemed


  • Camilla could not endure to keep her sister a moment in this suspensive state, and made an excuse for quitting the table that she might instantly seek the manuscript.


  • In this suspensive state, fearing to call, to move, or almost to breathe, she remained, in perfect stillness, and in the dark, till little


  • He found no longer any difficulty in promising not to act with precipitance; his confidence was gone; his elevation of sentiment was depressed; a general mist clouded his prospects, and a suspensive discomfort inquieted his mind.


  • The provisional and suspensive attitude was intolerable to her impetuous genius, and the gaps which scientific investigation was unable to fill were straightway hidden behind an artificial screen of metaphysical phantasies.


  • The tree-trunks, the road, the out-buildings, the garden, every object wore that aspect of mesmeric fixity which the suspensive quietude of daybreak lends to such scenes.

    The Woodlanders

  • Webster suggested there was "nothing improper or unlawful" about such a suspensive condition - that approval could be revoked if the water problem could not be resolved.

    ANC Daily News Briefing


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