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[dih-strak-tid] /dɪˈstræk tɪd/
having the attention diverted:
She tossed several rocks to the far left and slipped past the distracted sentry.
rendered incapable of behaving, reacting, etc., in a normal manner, as by worry, remorse, or the like; irrational; disturbed.
Origin of distracted
First recorded in 1580-90; distract + -ed2
Related forms
distractedly, adverb
distractedness, noun
nondistracted, adjective
nondistractedly, adverb
undistracted, adjective
undistractedly, adverb
undistractedness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for distractedly
Historical Examples
  • "But the fellow was forever sticking in here," he burst out, distractedly.

    Tales of Unrest Joseph Conrad
  • I heard him slap his forehead, and say distractedly, "But perhaps she is not in a ship."

    Romance Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer
  • "I think I've seen to everything," said Mrs. Stanton distractedly.

  • She looked at him distractedly, the fire burning through her heart.

    The Hero William Somerset Maugham
  • distractedly Lady Kelsey sent messages to her nephew and to Mrs. Crowley.

    The Explorer W. Somerset Maugham
  • He looked about distractedly and screwed up his eyes as if dazzled by the sun.

    War and Peace Leo Tolstoy
  • She looked at him distractedly, brushing her hands across her eyes.

    Privy Seal Ford Madox Ford
  • distractedly we hurried to the spot already surrounded by a crowd of slaves.

    Aurelian William Ware
  • Its my belief,' says my friend, 'that that woman is distractedly in love with you.'

    The History of Pendennis William Makepeace Thackeray
  • She moved on distractedly, but he put out his hand and stayed her.

    John Enderby Gilbert Parker
British Dictionary definitions for distractedly


bewildered; confused
Derived Forms
distractedly, adverb
distractedness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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