Definitions for: Formative

[n] minimal language unit that has a syntactic (or morphological) function
[adj] forming or capable of forming or molding; "a formative influence"; "a formative experience"
[adj] (biology) capable of forming new cells and tissues; "a formative zone in developing bone"
[adj] beginning to develop; "inchoative stages"
[adj] susceptible to alteration by development and experience; "formative years"
[adj] relating to or characterized by formative effects or formation; "the formative arts"

Webster (1913) Definition: Form"a*tive, a. [Cf. F. formatif.]
1. Giving form; having the power of giving form; plastic; as,
the formative arts.

The meanest plant can not be raised without seed, by
any formative residing in the soil. --Bentley.

2. (Gram.) Serving to form; derivative; not radical; as, a
termination merely formative.

3. (Biol.) Capable of growth and development; germinal; as,
living or formative matter.

Form"a*tive, n. (Gram.)
(a) That which serves merely to give form, and is no part
of the radical, as the prefix or the termination of a
(b) A word formed in accordance with some rule or usage,
as from a root.

Synonyms: constructive, immature, inchoative, shaping, young

See Also: language unit, linguistic unit

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