vacillate

[ vas-uh-leyt ]
/ ˈvæs əˌleɪt /

verb (used without object), vac·il·lat·ed, vac·il·lat·ing.

to waver in mind or opinion; be indecisive or irresolute: His tendency to vacillate makes him a poor leader.
to sway unsteadily; waver; totter; stagger.
to oscillate or fluctuate.

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Origin of vacillate

1590–1600; < Latin vacillātus (past participle of vacillāre to sway to and fro); see -ate1

SYNONYMS FOR vacillate

1 hesitate. See waver1.
2 reel.

OTHER WORDS FROM vacillate

vac·il·la·tor, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for vacillate

British Dictionary definitions for vacillate

vacillate
/ (ˈvæsɪˌleɪt) /

verb (intr)

to fluctuate in one's opinions; be indecisive
to sway from side to side physically; totter or waver

Derived forms of vacillate

vacillation, nounvacillator, noun

Word Origin for vacillate

C16: from Latin vacillāre to sway, of obscure origin
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