- An example of an expletive is saying "damn it."
- An example of an expletive is adding "it is" in the sentence "time for us to eat."
- an oath or exclamation, esp. an obscenity
- a word, phrase, etc. not needed for the sense but used merely to fill out a sentence or metrical line, for grammar, rhythm, balance, etc.: there in “there is nothing left” is an expletive
- Rare anything serving as a filler
Origin of expletiveLate Latin expletivus, serving to fill ; from Classical Latin expletus, past participle of explere, to fill ; from ex-, out, up + plere, to fill: see full
- An exclamation or oath, especially one that is profane, vulgar, or obscene.
- a. A word or phrase that does not contribute any meaning but is added only to fill out a sentence or a metrical line.b. Linguistics A word or other grammatical element that has no meaning but is needed to fill a syntactic position, such as the words it and there in the sentences It's raining and There are many books on the table.
Origin of expletiveFrom Late Latin expl&emacron;t&imacron;vus, serving to fill out, from Latin expl&emacron;tus, past participle of expl&emacron;re, to fill out : ex-, ex- + pl&emacron;re, to fill; see pel&schwa;-1 in Indo-European roots.
(comparative more expletive, superlative most expletive)
- Serving to fill up, merely for effect, otherwise redundant.
- Marked by expletives (phrase-fillers).