SYNONYMS | WORD ORIGIN adjective deviating from the usual or proper course in conduct or opinion; eccentric; queer: erratic behavior. having no certain or definite course; wandering; not fixed: erratic winds. . Geology noting or pertaining to a boulder or the like carried by glacial ice and deposited some distance from its place of origin. (of a lichen) having no attachment to the surface on which it grows. noun an erratic or eccentric person. . Geology an erratic boulder or the like. Origin of erratic 1325–75; Middle English
) (past participle of
-icus -ic Related forms er·rat·i·cal·ly, adverb er·rat·i·cism, noun non·er·rat·ic, adjective, noun non·er·rat·i·cal·ly, adverb un·er·rat·ic, adjective
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for erraticism adjective irregular in performance, behaviour, or attitude; inconsistent and unpredictable having no fixed or regular course; wandering noun a piece of rock that differs in composition, shape, etc, from the rock surrounding it, having been transported from its place of origin, esp by glacial action an erratic person or thing Derived Forms erratically, adverb Word Origin for erratic
C14: from Latin
errāticus, from errāre to wander, err
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
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Word Origin and History for erraticism adj.
late 14c., "wandering, moving," from Old French
erratique (13c.) and directly from Latin erraticus "wandering, straying, roving," from erratum "an error, mistake, fault," past participle of errare "to wander, err" (see err). Sense of "irregular, eccentric" is attested by 1841. The noun is from 1620s, of persons; 1849, of boulders. Related: Erratically.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper