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Integr- (the root of integr(ity)) + -ous (adjectival suffix: “full of, characterised by, possessing”).



integrous (comparative more integrous, superlative most integrous)

  1. (rare) Having or characterized by integrity.
    • 1899, Arthur Christopher Benson, The Life of Edward White Benson, Sometime Archbishop of Canterbury, page 435 (Macmillan)
      No doubt hard, no doubt proud, unpleasant in self-esteem, and singularly blind to much of what was going on, and yet such a high-minded and integrous woman, […]
    • 1968, Joseph Frank, Hobbled Pegasus: A Descriptive Bibliography of Minor English Poetry, 1641–1660, page 221 (University of New Mexico Press)
      And Smiths of Policie shall invent,
      To cast new Molds of Government;
      While vulgar Birds, of weakest wing,
      Grow stout against the Eagle King,
      Whose just integrous heart shall prove
      The Adamant of Subjects love.
    • 2007, Tanya Levin, People in Glass Houses: An Insider’s Story of a Life in and Out of Hillsong, Black Inc., →ISBN, pages 266–267, →ISBN:
      He concluded by writing that ‘Hillsong is the most integrous church in the country, and its leadership is above reproach’.

Usage notes[edit]

  • In common usage, integrity is much more common than its adjectival form, integrous.[1] Most speakers and writers opt for an etymologically unrelated synonym — such as honest, decent, or virtuous — when trying to express the adjectival complement of integrity in its moral and ethical sense. Even when the structural or analytical sense of integrity is meant, constructions such as "has integrity" or "retaining integrity" are more commonly heard than the adjective integrous, indicating a species of lexical gap in which an apt word is not nonexistent but is rare enough that for most speakers it usually does not arise in the word-finding aspects of cognition during speech or writing. Another adjective related to integrity is integral, but that adjective usually focuses on a part (conveying that the part is built in) rather than applying to the whole (conveying that the whole has integrity). To convey that one is of or marked by integrity, other adjectives may be used including upright and upstanding.