hectic

[hek-tik]
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adjective
  1. characterized by intense agitation, excitement, confused and rapid movement, etc.: The week before the trip was hectic and exhausting.

Origin of hectic

1350–1400; Middle English < Late Latin hecticus < Greek hektikós habitual, consumptive, adj. corresponding to héxis possession, state, habit, equivalent to *hech-, base of échein to have + -sis -sis; see -tic; replacing Middle English etyk < Middle French
Related formshec·ti·cal·ly, hec·tic·ly, adverbhec·tic·ness, nounnon·hec·tic, adjectivenon·hec·ti·cal·ly, adverbun·hec·tic, adjectiveun·hec·ti·cal·ly, adverb

Synonyms for hectic

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018


Examples from the Web for hectically

Historical Examples of hectically

  • Eyes that met when commands were given and received were dull from want of sleep or hectically bright as a hypochondriac's.

    The Last Shot

    Frederick Palmer


British Dictionary definitions for hectically

hectic

adjective
  1. characterized by extreme activity or excitement
  2. associated with, peculiar to, or symptomatic of tuberculosis (esp in the phrases hectic fever, hectic flush)
noun
  1. a hectic fever or flush
  2. rare a person who is consumptive or who experiences a hectic fever or flush
Derived Formshectically, adverb

Word Origin for hectic

C14: from Late Latin hecticus, from Greek hektikos habitual, from hexis state, from ekhein to have
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 hectically

hectic

adj.

late 14c., etik (in fever etik), from Old French etique "consumptive," from Late Latin hecticus, from Greek hektikos "continuous, habitual, consumptive" (of a disease, because of the constant fever), from hexis "a habit (of mind or body)," from ekhein "have, hold, continue" (see scheme).

The Latin -h- was restored in English 16c. Sense of "feverishly exciting, full of disorganized activity" first recorded 1904, but hectic also was used in Middle English as a noun meaning "feverish desire, consuming passion" (early 15c.). Hectic fevers are characterized by rapid pulse, among other symptoms. Related: Hecticness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper