Definitions

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

  • adjective Disposed to seek revenge; revengeful.
  • adjective Marked by or resulting from a desire to hurt; spiteful.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Revengeful; given to revenge; indicating a revengeful spirit.
  • Punitive; pertaining to or serving as punishment.

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

  • adjective Disposed to revenge; prompted or characterized by revenge; revengeful.
  • adjective obsolete Punitive.
  • adjective (Law) See under Damage, n.

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

  • adjective Having a tendency to seek revenge when wronged.

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

  • adjective disposed to seek revenge or intended for revenge
  • adjective showing malicious ill will and a desire to hurt; motivated by spite

Etymologies

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

[From Latin vindicta, vengeance, from vindex, vindic-, surety, avenger; see vindicate.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin vindicta ("vengeance"), from vindico ("claim, vindicate"), from vindex ("defender"), +‎ -ive.

Examples

  • I realize that the word vindictive is a little strong for his comment to David, but there does seem to be some rancor coming from something.

    Never apologize

  • And then the constant problem: how informed, smart, generous, dumb, ignorant or vindictive is the population, and what timeline do they consider — this year, or this century? bob h says:

    Matthew Yglesias » Size Matters

  • Lying will not get you in the WH; to be vindictive is non-Christian.

    Schmidt calls Palin claims 'total fiction'

  • More than forty years of strife and struggle with the whisper that, by whatever name she called her vindictive pride and rage, nothing through all eternity could change their nature.

    Little Dorrit

  • So I called her vindictive, and then she just laughed at me.

    hamletwildie Diary Entry

  • He painted in strong terms the incapacity, and what he called the vindictive and treacherous disposition, of the king; and declared, that to liberate him from the confinement under which he was now placed, would be to expose to certain death, a princess, who, by her wisdom and courage, had been the salvation of the state.

    Coronation Anecdotes

  • More than forty years of strife and struggle with the whisper that, by whatever name she called her vindictive pride and rage, nothing through all eternity could change their nature.

    Little Dorrit

  • If her campaign was going to leak something like this, they’d do it anonymously, since this just makes her look vindictive, and making Hillary look vindictive is what Fox does, not what her campaign does.

    Waldo Jaquith - Fox News caught lying about Sen. Obama.

  • Rather then calling Sarah's book "setting the record straight", the media call it vindictive.

    Schmidt calls Palin claims 'total fiction'

  • Again, she lied with good reason: to avoid being identified as a vindictive political power player who used the F.B.I. to ruin the lives of people standing in the way of juicy patronage.

    Clintons Release 2000-2006 Returns: Earned $110 Million, Paid $33 Million In Taxes

Comments

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  • Our wrath tends to be vindictive and punitive. God’s wrath is untainted by self-interest and tempered by mercy. His wrath can even be His relentless love that brings our antagonists to repentance and faith. ODB May 18, 2011.

    March 18, 2011

  • WHOAT! I never knew that vindictive meant to seek revenge!

    November 5, 2012