[ tem-per-uh-men-tl, -pruh-men-, -per-men- ]
/ ˌtɛm pər əˈmɛn tl, -prəˈmɛn-, -pərˈmɛn- /


having or exhibiting a strongly marked, individual temperament.
moody, irritable, or sensitive: a temperamental artist.
given to erratic behavior; unpredictable.
of or relating to temperament; constitutional: temperamental differences.

Origin of temperamental

First recorded in 1640–50; temperament + -al1
Related forms
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for temperamental

British Dictionary definitions for temperamental


/ (ˌtɛmpərəˈmɛntəl, -prəˈmɛntəl) /


easily upset or irritated; excitable; volatile
of, relating to, or caused by temperament
informal working erratically and inconsistently; unreliablea temperamental sewing machine
Derived Formstemperamentally, 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 temperamental



"of or pertaining to temperament," 1640s, from temperament; in the sense of "moody" it is recorded from 1907.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper