[kuh-prish-uhs, -pree-shuhs]


subject to, led by, or indicative of a sudden, odd notion or unpredictable change; erratic: He's such a capricious boss I never know how he'll react.
Obsolete. fanciful or witty.

Nearby words

  1. capri-,
  2. capric acid,
  3. capriccio,
  4. capriccioso,
  5. caprice,
  6. capriciously,
  7. capricorn,
  8. capricornia,
  9. capricornian,
  10. capricornus

Origin of capricious

1585–95; < Italian capriccioso capriccioso

Related forms Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for capricious

British Dictionary definitions for capricious



characterized by or liable to sudden unpredictable changes in attitude or behaviour; impulsive; fickle
Derived Formscapriciously, adverbcapriciousness, 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

Word Origin and History for capricious



1590s, from French capricieux "whimsical" (16c.), from Italian capriccioso, from capriccio (see caprice). Related: Capriciously; capriciousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper