- taken, done, used, etc., surreptitiously or by stealth; secret: a furtive glance.
- sly; shifty: a furtive manner.
- characterized by stealth; sly and secretive
late 15c. (implied in furtively), from French furtif, from Latin furtivus “stolen, hidden, secret,” from furtum “theft, robbery,” from fur (genitive furis) “thief,” probably from PIE *bhor-, from root *bher- (1) “to carry” (see infer). Related: Furtiveness.