tangential

[ tan-jen-shuh l ]
/ tænˈdʒɛn ʃəl /

adjective

pertaining to or of the nature of a tangent; being or moving in the direction of a tangent.
merely touching; slightly connected: tangential information.
divergent or digressive, as from a subject under consideration: tangential remarks.
tending to digress or to reply to questions obliquely.
Also tan·gen·tal [tan-jen-tl] /tænˈdʒɛn tl/.

Origin of tangential

First recorded in 1620–30; tangent + -ial
Related forms
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for tangentiality

tangential

/ (tænˈdʒɛnʃəl) /

adjective

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
Derived Formstangentiality, nountangentially or tangentally, adverb
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 tangentiality

tangential


adj.

1620s, see tangent; figurative sense of "divergent, erratic" is from 1787. Related: Tangentially.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for tangentiality

tangentiality

[ tăn-jĕn′shē-ălĭ-tē ]

n.

A disturbance in the associative thought process in which one tends to digress readily from one topic under discussion to other topics that arise through association.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.