Definition of heteroclite in English:



  • Abnormal or irregular.

    • ‘Lefebvre's Marxism was heteroclite, and was heavily informed via his engagement with other thinkers.’
    • ‘His objection to Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics lies in its lack of uniform argument or quality: ‘It is heteroclite, a hodge-podge of astute comment and utter bosh’.’
    • ‘In America on the other hand, immigrant publics, with weakened connexions to heteroclite pasts, could only be aggregated by narrative and visual schemas stripped to their most abstract, recursive common denominators.’
    unorthodox, unconventional, non-standard, unusual, uncommon, unwonted, out of the ordinary, radical, revolutionary, nonconformist, unconforming, irregular, offbeat, off-centre, avant-garde
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  • 1An abnormal thing or person.

    • ‘The most monomaniacal and extreme of Berlin Dadaists, Johannes Baader is to Dada what Byron is to Romanticism, ultimately inassimilable and heteroclitic among heteroclites.’
    • ‘The ` moderns’ includes Gerrit Rietveld and Alvar Aalto and the ` heteroclites’ (a term used to describe those designers mixing styles from a number of sources such as surrealism and popular culture) features Gio Ponti and Isamu Noguchi.’
    1. 1.1An irregularly declined word, especially a Greek or Latin noun.
      • ‘There is not space here to catalogue the various irregularities, heteroclites, metaplastic forms, etc., of Attic Greek, but the lists given in Kuehner-Blass, or any other of the more elaborate Greek grammars, are enough to convince the most skeptical.’
      • ‘Lily had intended to supply a text on heteroclites, and Robertson did so; but no text is here mentioned.’


Late 15th century: via late Latin from Greek heteroklitos, from heteros other + -klitos inflected (from klinein to lean, inflect).