V2 Vocabulary Building Dictionary


adjective, noun

Definition: (adj.) originating from something else and not original; (n.) something developed from something similar to itself

Synonyms: (adj.) derived, imitative, secondary, (n.) descendant, offshoot, offspring, by-product

Antonyms: (adj.) archetypal, authentic, original

Tips: Derivative is used as a noun in science, mathematics, and linguistics, but as a (pejorative) adjective in most non-technical conversation. However, it may also be used informally as a noun (see usage examples) to refer to anything that is derived from something else. Usually if something is derivative, it is not the result of new ideas, but has been developed from something else.

Usage Examples:

Unfortunately, while this novel shows some promise, it is basically derivative of other novels about World War II, echoing the same well-trodden themes. (imitative) adjective

Hollywood movies have become so derivative that you can see exactly how one director was influenced by another. (imitative, unoriginal) adjective

Deride is a derivative of the Latin word derider, which means "to laugh." (offspring) noun

His painting style is clearly derivative of the masters and not original. (imitative) adjective

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