in a way that barely touches or involves someone or something:The subject’s tempestuous first marriage is only tangentially dealt with in the biography.
in a way that is only slightly related or relevant:The novel dedicates a huge amount of space to characters and events that are, at most, tangentially connected to the main plot.
in a divergent or digressive way:Whether or not this is easier, as I have tangentially mentioned, is in fact a difficult question.
- Rarely tan·gen·tal·ly .
- non·tan·gen·tial·ly, adverb
- un·tan·gen·tial·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024
How to use tangentially in a sentence
Seek out events in your industry, or things that are tangentially related.Six content ideas to supercharge your marketing in 2021 | Ann Smarty | July 28, 2021 | Search Engine Watch
This issue came up tangentially in a Supreme Court case that had nothing to do with bookselling.Outcry over book ‘censorship’ reveals how online retailers choose books — or don’t | Ron Charles | April 22, 2021 | Washington Post
Those excess deaths track with the surges in coronavirus infections, but some portion of the total may be from other factors tangentially related to the pandemic response, such as increased drug overdoses.Visualizing the deadliest 12 months in modern American history | Philip Bump | March 11, 2021 | Washington Post
Since modern conspiracy theories are relatively omnivorous, even tangential elements such as the Sharpiegate claim could be folded into this broader story.Five election misinformation campaigns to avoid resharing | By Starbird, West, & DiResta/The Conversation | November 6, 2020 | Popular-Science
If candidates prefer to answer questions with tangential preplanned talking points instead of actually debating, then perhaps individual town halls are a better fit.
But DARPA has learned that wavefronts move tangentially along walls as well.How a Thumb-Sized Gauge Is Revolutionizing Traumatic Brain Injuries | Brian Castner | March 23, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
At Davos, the issue is tangentially on the agenda, with sessions on youth unemployment.
The internal language and logic of the markets is related to what is going on in the real world, but right now only tangentially.
Its adhesion being overcome in the least possible degree, it moves in the same degree tangentially.
The appendage should have the appearance of flowing smoothly and, if possible, tangentially from the primary mass.Industrial Arts Design | William H. Varnum
The other elements of the wood shrink radially and tangentially, but almost none lengthwise or vertically as applied to the tree.The Mechanical Properties of Wood | Samuel J. Record
Folding of the rocks resulted from the operation of great compressive forces acting tangentially to the figure of the earth.
The fusees are fixed obliquely and not tangentially to their peripheries.A Dictionary of Arts, Manufactures and Mines | Andrew Ure