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captious Meaning, Definition & Usage

  1. adjective satellite tending to find and call attention to faults
    • a captious pedant
    • an excessively demanding and faultfinding tutor

Cap"tious adjective
F. captieux, L. captiosus. See Caption.
  1. Art to catch at faults; disposed to find fault or to cavil; eager to object; difficult to please.
    A captius and suspicious. Stillingfleet.
    I am sensible I have not disposed my materials to adbide the test of a captious controversy. Bwike.
  2. Fitted to harass, perplex, or insnare; insidious; troublesome.
    Captious restraints on navigation. Bancroft.
    Syn. -- Caviling, carping, fault-finding; censorious; hypercritical; peevish, fretful; perverse; troublesome. -- Captious, caviling, Carping. A captious person is one who has a fault-finding habit or manner, or is disposed to catch at faults, errors, etc., with quarrelsome intent; a caviling person is disposed to raise objections on frivolous grounds; carping implies that one is given to ill-natured, persistent, or unreasonable fault-finding, or picking up of the words or actions of others.
    Caviling is the carping of argument, carping the caviling of ill temper. C. J. Smith.

Webster 1913