[ al-troo-is-tik ]
/ ˌæl truˈɪs tɪk /


unselfishly concerned for or devoted to the welfare of others (opposed to egoistic).
Animal Behavior. of or relating to behavior by an animal that may be to its disadvantage but that benefits others of its kind, often its close relatives.

Origin of altruistic

First recorded in 1850–55; altru(ism) + -istic
Related formsal·tru·is·ti·cal·ly, adverbhy·per·al·tru·is·tic, adjectivenon·al·tru·is·tic, adjectivenon·al·tru·is·ti·cal·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for altruistically

  • The lieutenant, being young himself, was not so cautiously and altruistically apprehensive.

    The Storm Centre|Charles Egbert Craddock
  • Selfishly, altruistically, the story was the thing for him to do.

    To Him That Hath|Leroy Scott
  • The three women fell to wrangling, altruistically, of course, over the two front seats.

    What Will People Say?|Rupert Hughes
  • But the girl he saw from the car window—did she also appeal to him altruistically?

Word Origin and History for altruistically



1853, from French altruiste (adj.), from altruisme (see altruism) + -ic.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper