SYNONYMS | EXAMPLES | WORD ORIGIN adjective happening by chance or accident; not planned; unexpected: an accidental meeting. nonessential; incidental; subsidiary: accidental benefits. . Music relating to or indicating sharps, flats, or naturals. noun a nonessential or subsidiary circumstance, characteristic, or feature. . Music a sign placed before a note indicating a chromatic alteration of its pitch. Origin of accidental
First recorded in
1350–1400; Middle English
-al 1 Related forms ac·ci·den·tal·ly, ac·ci·dent·ly, adverb ac·ci·den·tal·ness, ac·ci·den·tal·i·ty, noun non·ac·ci·den·tal, adjective, noun non·ac·ci·den·tal·ly, adverb non·ac·ci·den·tal·ness, noun pre·ac·ci·den·tal, adjective pre·ac·ci·den·tal·ly, adverb pseu·do·ac·ci·den·tal, adjective pseu·do·ac·ci·den·tal·ly, adverb qua·si-ac·ci·den·tal, adjective qua·si-ac·ci·den·tal·ly, adverb un·ac·ci·den·tal, adjective un·ac·ci·den·tal·ly, adverb Synonym study 1. Accidental, casual, fortuitous all describe something outside the usual course of events. Accidental implies occurring unexpectedly or by chance: an accidental blow. Casual describes a passing event of slight importance: a casual reference. Fortuitous is applied to events occurring without known cause, often of a fortunate or favorable nature: a fortuitous shower of meteors. It often also implies good luck or good fortune: a fortuitous choice leading to rapid advancement.
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Examples from the Web for accidently Contemporary Examples of accidently
An ITF anti-doping tribunal ruled in 2009 that Richard Gasquet
accidently ingested cocaine while kissing a woman at a nightclub.
Did you once
accidently apply to a school in Michigan thinking it was in New York? Historical Examples of accidently
At that very moment, the crepe flounce on her dress was
accidently torn off.
He had chopped off several of her fingers, when they were
The matter was settled for him by meeting her
accidently outside the buvette.
accidently put an end to her own life several weeks ago.
I was in dread for fear his trembling finger might
accidently touch the trigger. British Dictionary definitions for accidently adjective occurring by chance, unexpectedly, or unintentionally nonessential; incidental music denoting sharps, flats, or naturals that are not in the key signature of a piece logic (of a property) not essential; contingent noun an incidental, nonessential, or supplementary circumstance, factor, or attribute music a symbol denoting a sharp, flat, or natural that is not a part of the key signature Derived Forms accidentally, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for accidently adj.
late 14c., "non-essential," from Old French
accidentel or directly from Medieval Latin accidentalis, from Latin accidentem (see accident). Meaning "outside the normal course of nature" is from early 15c.; that of "coming by chance" is from 1570s. n.
late 14c., "non-essential quality," from
accidental (adj.). The musical sense is from 1868.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper