protean

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Ancient Greek Πρωτεύς (Prōteus), the Greek warden of sea beasts, renowned for his ability to change shape.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈprəʊ.tɪ.ən/, /prəʊˈtiː.ən/
  • (US) enPR: prō'ti-ən, prō-tē'ən, IPA(key): /ˈproʊ.tɪ.ən/, /proʊˈtiː.ən/
  • (file)
    ,
    (file)

Adjective[edit]

protean (comparative more protean, superlative most protean)

  1. Exceedingly variable; readily assuming different shapes or forms.
    An amoeba is a protean animalcule.
    His plots and protean characters plunge readers into the world of fable, yet their universal appeal, as this biography shows, is deeply rooted in the particularity of Garcia Marquez’s own idiosyncratic early life...
  2. Of or pertaining to Proteus; characteristic of Proteus.

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