Adjective "officious" definition and examples



Definitions and examples


Assertive of authority in a domineering way, especially with regard to trivial matters.
  1. 'What we really need there is officious immigration authorities who are willing to say ‘Nope, from now on you're Tina; trust me on this one.’'
  2. 'Overly officious, he issued an amazing 10 yellow cards and one red, in what wasn't a dirty game.'
  3. 'I was stopped at the University gates by an officious guard who asked me for my faculty card.'
  4. 'It is not arrogant, officious, overbearing or patronising.'
  5. 'The worst were the overly officious customs officials who are no advert for American hospitality.'
  6. 'The officious official declared authoritatively: ‘It's already been decided that whether or not you have a ticket, you are not welcome.’'
  7. 'Two social workers arrived at my place of work two weeks later and in a very high handed and officious manner insisted on ‘interviewing’ me in front of my staff.'
  8. 'The hotel manager in Gansu is officious, just like the clean, well-appointed government facility she oversees.'
  9. 'They all seemed impatient and officious and preoccupied.'
  10. 'Our underlying concern is that we could get one or two officious people policing it.'
  11. 'an officious bystander'
  12. 'And it would be essential if, but only if, the material that was being filmed was material of a kind that the inevitable officious bystander would say should not be filmed without consent.'
  13. 'You're strolling absent-mindedly down Coney Street, glancing idly at the displays in shop windows, when an officious little man in a yellow reflective jacket pops out of nowhere and accosts you.'
  14. 'It is, however, often imprudent and officious to try and fix the problems and arbitrate the quarrels of strangers.'
  15. 'Had an officious bystander raised the possibility, can one doubt that George would have ridiculed it?'
  16. 'Should you find yourself getting a wee bit officious in your personal communications, remember the wise advice of Confucious: Be nice, go far.'


1. objectionably aggressive in offering one's unrequested and unwanted services, help, or advice; meddlesome: an officious person.

2. marked by or proceeding from such forwardness: officious interference.

3. Obsolete. ready to serve; obliging.

More examples(as adjective)

"wardens can be officious."

"voices can be officious."

"bystanders can be officious."

"workers can be officious."

"wells can be officious."

More examples++


Late 15th century: from Latin officiosus ‘obliging’, from officium (see office). The original sense was ‘performing its function, efficacious’, whence ‘ready to help or please’ (mid 16th century), later becoming depreciatory (late 16th century).