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capricious

[kuh-prish-uh s, -pree-shuh s]
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adjective
  1. 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.
  2. Obsolete. fanciful or witty.
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Origin of capricious

1585–95; < Italian capriccioso capriccioso
Related formsca·pri·cious·ly, adverbca·pri·cious·ness, nounnon·ca·pri·cious, adjectivenon·ca·pri·cious·ly, adverbnon·ca·pri·cious·ness, nounun·ca·pri·cious, adjectiveun·ca·pri·cious·ly, adverbun·ca·pri·cious·ness, noun

Synonyms

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1. variable, flighty, mercurial. See fickle.

Antonyms

1. steady, constant, consistent.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for capriciousness

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The capriciousness of love is also derived by him from an attachment to some god in a former world.

  • Nor is this capriciousness exclusively the attribute of the poetic Muse.

  • My capriciousness had exhausted his patience, and he frankly said that he washed his hands of the "case."

    My Life

    Josiah Flynt

  • It was the time to alarm him by coldness, by capriciousness.

    The Grain Of Dust

    David Graham Phillips

  • Capriciousness, natural in her condition,” commented all, even Capitan Tiago.


British Dictionary definitions for capriciousness

capricious

adjective
  1. characterized by or liable to sudden unpredictable changes in attitude or behaviour; impulsive; fickle
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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 capriciousness

capricious

adj.

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

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper