Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know


[het-er-uh-jee-nee-uh s, -jeen-yuh s] /ˌhɛt ər əˈdʒi ni əs, -ˈdʒin yəs/
different in kind; unlike; incongruous.
composed of parts of different kinds; having widely dissimilar elements or constituents:
The party was attended by a heterogeneous group of artists, politicians, and social climbers.
Chemistry. (of a mixture) composed of different substances or the same substance in different phases, as solid ice and liquid water.
Origin of heterogeneous
1615-25; < Medieval Latin heterogeneus < Greek heterogenḗs. See hetero-, gene, -ous
Related forms
heterogeneously, adverb
heterogeneousness, noun
Can be confused
heterogeneous, heterogenous, homogeneous, homogenous.
2. varied, diverse.
2. homogeneous. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for heterogeneous
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Those history plays, however, that do not follow the formulas for tragedy, are a heterogeneous group not easily classified.

    The Facts About Shakespeare William Allan Nielson
  • This heterogeneous family is well represented in the Nilgiris.

  • Look down upon this audience and you shall see a heterogeneous assembly such as London alone of the cities can show you.

    Aladdin of London Sir Max Pemberton
  • He who borrows only from heterogeneous works is not a plagiarist.

    A Simpleton Charles Reade
  • I asked innocently, my eyes ranging over the heterogeneous collection on the mantel.

    The Long Day Dorothy Richardson
  • Horace tried to make fun of the heterogeneous cups and saucers.

    Reginald Cruden Talbot Baines Reed
  • When broad daylight came we had the opportunity of seeing some of the heterogeneous elements of which Richmond was composed.

  • Once, among the heterogeneous crowd of inmates there appeared a dancing-master.

    Little Dorrit Charles Dickens
  • Without this, such a conflict, excluding all heterogeneous or objective factors, would not be possible.

British Dictionary definitions for heterogeneous


composed of unrelated or differing parts or elements
not of the same kind or type
(chem) of, composed of, or concerned with two or more different phases Compare homogeneous
Derived Forms
heterogeneity (ˌhɛtərəʊdʒɪˈniːɪtɪ), heterogeneousness, noun
heterogeneously, adverb
Word Origin
C17: from Medieval Latin heterogeneus, from Greek heterogenēs, from hetero- + genos sort
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for heterogeneous

1620s, from Medieval Latin heterogeneus, from Greek heterogenes, from heteros "different" (see hetero-) + genos "kind, gender, race stock" (see genus). Earlier in same sense was heterogeneal (c.1600).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
heterogeneous in Medicine

heterogeneous het·er·o·ge·ne·ous (hět'ər-ə-jē'nē-əs, -jēn'yəs)
Composed of parts having dissimilar characteristics or properties.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for heterogeneous

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for heterogeneous

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for heterogeneous