• WordNet 3.6
    • adj abusive characterized by physical or psychological maltreatment "abusive punishment","argued...that foster homes are abusive"
    • adj abusive expressing offensive reproach
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The major side effects from abusing anabolic steroids can include liver tumors and cancer, jaundice (yellowish pigmentation of skin, tissues, and body fluids), fluid retention, high blood pressure, increases in LDL (bad cholesterol), and decreases in HDL (good cholesterol). Other side effects include kidney tumors, severe acne, and trembling.
    • Abusive Containing abuse, or serving as the instrument of abuse; vituperative; reproachful; scurrilous. "An abusive lampoon."
    • Abusive Given to misusing; also, full of abuses. "The abusive prerogatives of his see."
    • Abusive Practicing abuse; prone to ill treat by coarse, insulting words or by other ill usage; as, an abusive author; an abusive fellow.
    • Abusive Tending to deceive; fraudulent; cheating. "An abusive treaty."
    • Abusive Wrongly used; perverted; misapplied. "I am . . . necessitated to use the word Parliament improperly, according to the abusive acceptation thereof."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: The mother of the boy Michael Jackson is accused of abusing is named 'Janet Jackson'.
    • abusive Practising abuse; using harsh words or ill treatment: as, an abusive author; an abusive fellow. Characterized by or containing abuse; marked by contumely or ill use; harsh; ill-natured; injurious.
    • abusive Marked by or full of abuses; corrupt: as, an abusive exercise of power.
    • abusive Misleading, or tending to mislead; employed by misuse; improper.
    • abusive Synonyms and Insolent, insultiug, offensive, scurrilous, ribald, reproachful, opprobrious, reviling.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Abusive containing or practising abuse: full of abuses: vituperative
    • ***


  • Edgar Watson Howe
    “Abuse a man unjustly, and you will make friends for him.”
  • Francis Quarles
    “Beware of him that is slow to anger; for when it is long coming, it is the stronger when it comes, and the longer kept. Abused patience turns to fury.”
  • Marcus T. Cicero
    “When you have no basis for an argument, abuse the plaintiff.”
  • William M. Thackeray
    “If a man character is to be abused there's nobody like a relative to do the business.”
  • Publius Cornelius Tacitus
    “Abuse if you slight it, will gradually die away; but if you show yourself irritated, you will be thought to have deserved it.”
  • Ronald Reagan
    “Let us not forget who we are. Drug abuse is a repudiation of everything America is.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Cf. F. abusif, fr. L. abusivus,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. ab, away (from what is right), uti, usus, to use.


In literature:

As we have just observed, he abused himself at times; but there were times also when he rendered himself justice.
"The Man Who Laughs" by Victor Hugo
And the people learned to look to the king for protection from abuse by their lords.
"Our Legal Heritage, 5th Ed." by S. A. Reilly
No gift from heaven is so general and so widely abused by woman as the gift of beauty.
"Searchlights on Health" by B. G. Jefferis and J. L. Nichols
The mind is given to use, not to abuse; and its abuse is no argument against its proper use.
"The Christian Home" by Samuel Philips
The conscious recognition of grave national abuses casts a deep shadow across the traditional American patriotic vision.
"The Promise Of American Life" by Herbert David Croly
Self-abuse may perhaps play some part in epilepsy commencing or recurring after the age of ten.
"Epilepsy, Hysteria, and Neurasthenia" by Isaac G. Briggs
But every talent is liable to abuse.
"Sermons on Various Important Subjects" by Andrew Lee
As to abuse, I am convinced that very few trusts in the ordinary course of administration have admitted less abuse than this.
"The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. II. (of 12)" by Edmund Burke
Generations of abuses had made, up to the time of the investigation, the history of the working-class in France.
"Women Wage-Earners" by Helen Campbell
Power is always abused, and in this case there is much honest ignorance, stimulated by agitators who are seldom honest.
"Outspoken Essays" by William Ralph Inge

In poetry:

Here precepts in it are dispens'd,
With threat'nings of damnation fenc'd;
The legal sanction here takes place,
That none may dare abuse free grace.
"The Believer's Principles : Chap. II." by Ralph Erskine
England the free is Europe's deliverer,
Standing the stalwart warder of Liberty;
For Englishmen know how to use it,--
Englishmen only will not abuse it!
"Freedom (In Alcaics.)" by Martin Farquhar Tupper
The souldiers lead me to the common hall;
There they deride me, they abuse me all;
Yet for twelve heav'nly legions I could call:
Was ever grief like mine?
"The Sacrifice" by George Herbert
Yet when did ever a recluse
Escape the baffled crowd's abuse?
The social world will ne'er condone
Thy preference to live alone
Amid resources of thine own.
"Seclusion" by John Lawson Stoddard
Guard thou the portals of my mouth, O Lord!
That I may no indecent language use,
No bounce, no boast, nor any silly word,
No false report, nor any foul abuse.
"A Prayer, Concerning The Government Of Our Words And Lips, &c." by Rees Prichard
Their soldiers adored them, and every grade
Delighted to hear their abuse;
Though whenever these officers came on parade
They shivered and shook in their shoes.
"The Two Majors" by William Schwenck Gilbert

In news:

Psychological abuse may be the most common type.
Specialists are urged to stay alert to the signs of psychological abuse.
It may be the most common kind of child abuse — and the most challenging to deal with.
Four decades of silence ended this week when a Catholic religious order acknowledged the sexual abuse of a San Jose high school student at an elite boys school kept his secret for most of his life.
The alleged molester, Brother William Farrington, is shuttered away at a retirement home with other accused abusers.
Bellarmine acknowledges abuse accusation as credible.
Bellarmine College Preparatory in San Jose Tuesday acknowledged a credible accusation of sexual abuse against a student by a Jesuit four decades ago.
Bench Warrant Issued In Child Abuse Case.
Kemble was arrested by a Kay County deputy on Aug 14 near the intersection of US 60 and Waverly Street and later charged with child abuse.
Bench Warrant Issued In Child Abuse Case.
Abuse Accusations Besiege Catholic Church.
Not since "executive" or "deluxe" has a word been so monstrously distorted, abused and otherwise mangled into near meaninglessness.
It presents the stories of eight people, three abusers and five who were abused.
A former Putnam County Schools janitor pleaded guilty to sexual abuse by a parent or guardian and child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury Thursday in Putnam County Circuit Court.
An internal investigation into a former player's allegations of abuse by Washington State football coaches didn't turn up any evidence of such abuse, athletic director Bill Moos said Wednesday.

In science:

By abuse of notation, we let ZsN denote the zero set of a section sN as well as the current of integration over the zero set.
Number variance of random zeros on complex manifolds
To this graph we can associate the category abusively denoted N , such that H omN (U, V ) is the set of paths between the users U and V of the graph.
CRyptography and non commutative cohomology
V in IZ such that the transition function defined on U ×C V is hnU ◦ hnV where hnU is the function defined on IZ /nIZ − {0} by c → αnU c, and the final ob ject of C is abusively denoted C .
CRyptography and non commutative cohomology
We hope this abuse of notation will not confuse the reader as it should be clear from the context what is meant.
A note on plurisubharmonic defining functions in C^2
We shall point out that in the definition of the annealed path measures we are making a slight abuse of standard terminology.
Large Deviations and Phase Transition for Random Walks in Random Nonnegative Potentials