- (of similar things or occurrences) appearing or happening at irregular intervals in time; occasional: sporadic renewals of enthusiasm.
- appearing in scattered or isolated instances, as a disease.
- isolated, as a single instance of something; being or occurring apart from others.
- occurring singly or widely apart in locality: the sporadic growth of plants.
Origin of sporadic
SynonymsSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Related Wordsfitful, infrequent, rare, irregular, intermittent, random, scattered, isolated, occasional, desultory, spotty, few, hit-or-miss, scarce, seldom, spasmodic, uncommon
Examples from the Web for sporadic
This is where the sporadic and hectic handling of the romance in the movies fails.Team Peeta or Team Gale: Why the ‘Hunger Games’ Love Triangle Ruins ‘Mockingjay – Part 1’
November 28, 2014
The chanting—so much a part of protests here for the past 100-plus days—was sporadic through Monday night.Raging Protesters Set Ferguson on Fire
November 25, 2014
I left Lebanon in June 2012, but we kept in sporadic touch via Facebook.ISIS Thugs Behead Peter Kassig
October 4, 2014
Sporadic riots and fires did break out later during the festival.A Brief History of the Phrase 'F*ck the Police'
August 23, 2014
Sporadic fighting also continued in eastern Ukrainian cities on Thursday.Pentagon Moves to Block Russian Spy Plane in American Skies
April 18, 2014
Under its sporadic breezes, as it turned, the ward was trying to sleep.K
Mary Roberts Rinehart
Even in New England there was sporadic revolt from the beginning.The American Mind
To be sure, there are some sporadic efforts, mere reiterations.
And those other, sporadic members of our system, comets and meteors, what are they?The Outline of Science, Vol. 1 (of 4)
J. Arthur Thomson
At first resistance to Western encroachment was sporadic and unco-ordinated.The New World of Islam
- occurring at irregular points in time; intermittentsporadic firing
- scattered; isolateda sporadic disease
Word Origin and History for sporadic
1650s (implied in sporadical), from Medieval Latin sporadicus "scattered," from Greek sporadikos "scattered," from sporas (genitive sporados) "scattered," from spora "a sowing" (see spore). Originally a medical term, "occurring in scattered instances;" the meaning "happening at intervals" is first recorded 1847. Related: Sporadically.
- Occurring at irregular intervals.
- Occurring singly; not grouped.