Meaning of POSITIVE in English



Pronunciation: ' pä-z ə -tiv, ' päz-tiv

Function: adjective

Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin positivus, from positus, past participle of ponere

Date: 14th century

1 a : formally laid down or imposed : PRESCRIBED < positive laws> b : expressed clearly or peremptorily <her answer was a positive no > c : fully assured : CONFIDENT < positive it was her book>

2 a : of, relating to, or constituting the degree of comparison that is expressed in English by the unmodified and uninflected form of an adjective or adverb and denotes no increase or diminution b (1) : independent of changing circumstances : UNCONDITIONED <an insurance policy with positive coverage> (2) : relating to or constituting a motion or device that is definite, unyielding, constant, or certain in its action <a positive system of levers> c (1) : INCONTESTABLE < positive proof> (2) : UNQUALIFIED <a positive disgrace>

3 a : not fictitious : REAL < positive social tensions> b : active and effective in social or economic function rather than merely maintaining peace and order <a positive government>

4 a : indicating, relating to, or characterized by affirmation, addition, inclusion, or presence rather than negation, withholding, or absence <took the positive approach and struck a new deal rather than canceling the contract> b : having rendition of light and shade similar in tone to the tones of the original subject <a positive photographic image> c : contributing toward or characterized by increase or progression <take some positive action> < positive cash flow> d : directed or moving toward a source of stimulation <a positive taxis> e : real and numerically greater than zero <+2 is a positive integer>

5 a (1) : being, relating to, or charged with electricity of which the proton is the elementary unit and which predominates in a glass body after being rubbed with silk (2) : having more protons than electrons <a positive ion> b (1) : having higher electric potential and constituting the part from which the current flows to the external circuit <the positive terminal of a discharging storage battery> (2) : being an electron-collecting electrode of an electron tube

6 a : marked by or indicating acceptance, approval, or affirmation <received a positive response> b : affirming the presence especially of a condition, substance, or organism suspected to be present <a positive test for blood> also : having a test result indicating the presence especially of a condition, substance, or organism <HIV positive >

7 of a lens : converging light rays and forming a real inverted image

8 a : having a good effect : FAVORABLE <a positive role model> b : marked by optimism <the positive point of view>

synonyms see SURE

– pos · i · tive · ly \ -l ē , for emphasis often ˌ pä-z ə - ' tiv- \ adverb

– pos · i · tive · ness \ ' pä-z ə -tiv-n ə s, ' päz-tiv- \ noun

Merriam Webster Collegiate English Dictionary.      Merriam Webster - Энциклопедический словарь английского языка.