- The definition of elusive is being difficult to grasp or retain.
An example of elusive is a difficult name to remember.
- tending to elude
- hard to grasp or retain mentally; baffling
Origin of elusive; from Classical Latin elusus (see elusion) + -ive
- Tending to elude capture, perception, comprehension, or memory: “an invisible cabal of conspirators, each more elusive than the archterrorist [himself]” (David Kline).
- Difficult to define or describe: “Failures are more finely etched in our minds than triumphs, and success is an elusive, if not mythic, goal in our demanding society” (Hugh Drummond).
Origin of elusiveFrom Latin ēlūsus, past participle of ēlūdere, to elude; see elude.
(comparative more elusive, superlative most elusive)
From Latin elusus past participle of eludo (“to parry a blow, to deceive”)