- apt or tending to deceive: The enemy’s peaceful overtures may be deceptive.
- perceptually misleading: It looks like a curved line, but it’s deceptive.
- likely or designed to deceive; misleadingappearances can be deceptive
- music (of a cadence) another word for interrupted (def. 3)
1610s, from French deceptif (late 14c.), from Medieval Latin deceptivus, from decept-, past participle stem of Latin decipere (see deceive). Earlier in this sense was deceptious (c.1600), from French deceptieux, from Medieval Latin deceptiosus, from deceptionem. Related: Deceptively; deceptiveness.