From Late Latin heteroclitus, from Ancient Greek ἑτερόκλιτος (heteróklitos), from ἕτερος (héteros, “other, another, different”) + κλίνω (klínō, “lean, incline”), the latter from Proto-Indo-European *ḱley-.
- Deviating from the ordinary rule; eccentric, abnormal.
1759, Laurence Sterne, The Life & Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman, Penguin, published 2003, page 24:
- he was, on the contrary, as mercurial and sublimated a composition,
as heteroclite a creature in all his declensions;
-with as much life and whim, and gaité de cœur about him, as the kindliest climate could have engendered and put together.
1997, Gene Wolfe, The Urth of the New Sun:
- Nor could I have dreamed the heteroclite crew-men I had met aboard Tzadkiel's ship ...
- (grammar) Being irregularly declined or inflected.
heteroclite (plural heteroclites)
- A person who is unconventional; a maverick
- (grammar) An irregularly declined or inflected word
- (linguistics) A word whose etymological roots come from distinct, different languages or language groups.