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From Biology-Online Dictionary
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1. Having the power of driving or impelling; giving an impulse; moving; impellent. Poor men! Poor papers! We and they Do some impulsive force obey. (Prior)

2. Actuated by impulse or by transient feelings. My heart, impulsive and wayward. (Longfellow)

3. (Science: mechanics) Acting momentarily, or by impulse; not continuous; said of forces.

Origin: cf. F. Impulsif.