- 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: ; from Classical Latin elusus (see elusion) plush -ive
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
- 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: From Latin ēlūsus, past participle of ēlūdere, to elude; see elude.
- e·luˈsive·ly adverb
- e·luˈsive·ness noun