Also tan·gen·tal [tan-jen-tl] /tænˈdʒɛn tl/.
Origin of tangential
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for tangential
A tangential answer to your question would be, what am I proudest of?How I Write: Jared Diamond
November 20, 2013
Tangential characters are combined into composites or eliminated entirely; the same holds for certain events.‘Game of Thrones’ Season 2 Review: Majesty, Mystery, and Terror Reign Supreme
March 30, 2012
Once again the idea came from a tangential story she came across researching Unbroken.Laura Hillenbrand's Acclaimed Bestsellers Haven't Changed Her
December 21, 2011
In Fig. 6, F represents the tangential force that tends to cause skidding.American Rural Highways
T. R. Agg
From this simple lattice sphere all other Sphroidea can be derived either by radial or by tangential growth.
The tangential needles always seem to have the same shape as I have accurately described, in 1862, of Aulacantha scolymantha.
They are, in short, mountains of elevation, ridged up by tangential thrusts.Fragments of Earth Lore
It follows that a line from B to M will always be tangential to the epicycloid.
- of, being, relating to, or in the direction of a tangent
- Also: transverse astronomy (of velocity) in a direction perpendicular to the line of sight of a celestial objectCompare radial (def. 6)
- of superficial relevance only; digressive
Word Origin and History for tangential
1620s, see tangent; figurative sense of "divergent, erratic" is from 1787. Related: Tangentially.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper