"to blame, censure, rebuke, reproach, charge with a fault," mid-14c., reprehenden, from Latin reprehendere "to blame, censure, rebuke; seize, restrain," literally "pull back, hold back," from re- "back" (see re-) + prehendere "to grasp, seize" (from prae- "before," see pre-, + -hendere, from PIE root *ghend- "to seize, take").
word-forming element making adjectives from verbs, meaning "pertaining to, tending to; doing, serving to do," in some cases from Old French -if, but usually directly from Latin adjectival suffix -ivus (source also of Italian and Spanish -ivo). In some words borrowed from French at an early date it has been reduced to -y (as in hasty, tardy).
"containing much in comparatively small limits," 1610s, from French comprehénsif, from Late Latin comprehensivus, from comprehens-, past participle stem of Latin comprehendere "to take together, to unite; include; to comprehend, perceive" (to seize or take in the mind), from com "with, together," here probably "completely" (see com-) + prehendere "to catch hold of, seize," from prae- "before" (see pre-) + -hendere, from PIE root *ghend- "to seize, take." Related: Comprehensively (mid-15c.); comprehensiveness.