Passive verb
Passive Pas"sive, a. [L. passivus: cf. F. passif. See {Passion}.] 1. Not active, but acted upon; suffering or receiving impressions or influences; as, they were passive spectators, not actors in the scene. [1913 Webster]

The passive air Upbore their nimble tread. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

The mind is wholly passive in the reception of all its simple ideas. --Locke. [1913 Webster]

2. Receiving or enduring without either active sympathy or active resistance; without emotion or excitement; patient; not opposing; unresisting; as, passive obedience; passive submission. [1913 Webster]

The best virtue, passive fortitude. --Massinger. [1913 Webster]

3. (Chem.) Inactive; inert; not showing strong affinity; as, red phosphorus is comparatively passive. [1913 Webster]

4. (Med.) Designating certain morbid conditions, as hemorrhage or dropsy, characterized by relaxation of the vessels and tissues, with deficient vitality and lack of reaction in the affected tissues. [1913 Webster]

{Passive congestion} (Med.), congestion due to obstruction to the return of the blood from the affected part.

{Passive iron} (Chem.), iron which has been subjected to the action of heat, of strong nitric acid, chlorine, etc. It is then not easily acted upon by acids.

{Passive movement} (Med.), a movement of a part, in order to exercise it, made without the assistance of the muscles which ordinarily move the part.

{Passive obedience} (as used by writers on government), obedience or submission of the subject or citizen as a duty in all cases to the existing government.

{Passive prayer}, among mystic divines, a suspension of the activity of the soul or intellectual faculties, the soul remaining quiet, and yielding only to the impulses of grace.

{Passive verb}, or {Passive voice} (Gram.), a verb, or form of a verb, which expresses the effect of the action of some agent; as, in Latin, doceor, I am taught; in English, she is loved; the picture is admired by all; he is assailed by slander. [1913 Webster]

Syn: Inactive; inert; quiescent; unresisting; unopposing; suffering; enduring; submissive; patient. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • passive verb form — (Grammar) verb form in which the action is occurring to the subject (instead of the subject performing the action) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • passive — 1. The passive voice is illustrated by the sentence Brazil were beaten by France in the final, in which the object of the active verb becomes the subject of the passive verb and the subject is expressed as an agent introduced by the preposition… …   Modern English usage

  • Passive — Pas sive, a. [L. passivus: cf. F. passif. See {Passion}.] 1. Not active, but acted upon; suffering or receiving impressions or influences; as, they were passive spectators, not actors in the scene. [1913 Webster] The passive air Upbore their… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Passive congestion — Passive Pas sive, a. [L. passivus: cf. F. passif. See {Passion}.] 1. Not active, but acted upon; suffering or receiving impressions or influences; as, they were passive spectators, not actors in the scene. [1913 Webster] The passive air Upbore… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Passive iron — Passive Pas sive, a. [L. passivus: cf. F. passif. See {Passion}.] 1. Not active, but acted upon; suffering or receiving impressions or influences; as, they were passive spectators, not actors in the scene. [1913 Webster] The passive air Upbore… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Passive movement — Passive Pas sive, a. [L. passivus: cf. F. passif. See {Passion}.] 1. Not active, but acted upon; suffering or receiving impressions or influences; as, they were passive spectators, not actors in the scene. [1913 Webster] The passive air Upbore… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Passive obedience — Passive Pas sive, a. [L. passivus: cf. F. passif. See {Passion}.] 1. Not active, but acted upon; suffering or receiving impressions or influences; as, they were passive spectators, not actors in the scene. [1913 Webster] The passive air Upbore… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Passive prayer — Passive Pas sive, a. [L. passivus: cf. F. passif. See {Passion}.] 1. Not active, but acted upon; suffering or receiving impressions or influences; as, they were passive spectators, not actors in the scene. [1913 Webster] The passive air Upbore… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Passive voice — Passive Pas sive, a. [L. passivus: cf. F. passif. See {Passion}.] 1. Not active, but acted upon; suffering or receiving impressions or influences; as, they were passive spectators, not actors in the scene. [1913 Webster] The passive air Upbore… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • passive — I. adjective Etymology: Middle English, from Latin passivus, from passus, past participle Date: 14th century 1. a. (1) acted upon by an external agency (2) receptive to outside impressions or influences b. (1) asserting that the grammatical… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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