Advanced and Proficiency Vocabulary for Exams(e.g.GRE, Banks, Civil Services, SAT / LSAT). For IELTS/TOEFL, and everyday spoken vocabulary, go to our Spoken Vocabulary Database.
The formal word ‘pejorative’ refers to something said to or about somebody or something that is meant to be derisive or show disapproval. It has only negative connotations as it is by design insulting and belittling. Most commonly encountered in written English, particularly in print media.
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There are some who consider ‘ambitious’ to be a pejorative term because they think it implies being willing to do anything, no matter how unethical, in order to get ahead.
Many in the office consider Frank to be something of a bully as he frequently uses nicknames to pejoratively refer to his co-workers.
There is a growing movement to stop using the term ‘illegal alien’ to describe an undocumented foreign national living in the country as it is seen as being a pejorative.