[ spuh-rad-ik ]
See synonyms for: sporadicsporadically on Thesaurus.com

  1. (of similar things or occurrences) appearing or happening at irregular intervals in time; occasional: sporadic renewals of enthusiasm.

  2. appearing in scattered or isolated instances, as a disease.

  1. isolated, as a single instance of something; being or occurring apart from others.

  2. occurring singly or widely apart in locality: the sporadic growth of plants.

Origin of sporadic

First recorded in 1680–90; from Medieval Latin sporadicus, from Greek sporadikós, equivalent to sporad- (stem of sporás “strewn,” akin to sporá “sowing, seed”) + -ikos adjective suffix; see spore, -ic
  • Sometimes spo·rad·i·cal .

Other words for sporadic

Opposites for sporadic

Other words from sporadic

  • spo·rad·i·cal·ly, adverb
  • spo·rad·i·cal·ness, noun
  • spo·ra·dic·i·ty [spawr-uh-dis-i-tee], /ˌspɔr əˈdɪs ɪ ti/, spo·ra·dism, noun

Words Nearby sporadic

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use sporadic in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for sporadic


/ (spəˈrædɪk) /

  1. occurring at irregular points in time; intermittent: sporadic firing

  2. scattered; isolated: a sporadic disease

Origin of sporadic

C17: from Medieval Latin sporadicus, from Greek sporadikos, from sporas scattered; related to Greek speirein to sow; see spore

Derived forms of sporadic

  • sporadically, adverb
  • sporadicalness, 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