From Middle English sodain, from Anglo-Norman sodein, from Old French sodain, subdain (“immediate, sudden”), from Vulgar Latin *subitānus (“sudden”), from Latin subitāneus (“sudden”), from subitus (“sudden", literally, "that which has come stealthily”), originally the past participle of subīre (“to come or go stealthily”), from sub (“under”) + īre (“go”).
- Happening quickly and with little or no warning.
- 1913, Joseph C. Lincoln, chapter 1, in Mr. Pratt's Patients:
- I stumbled along through the young pines and huckleberry bushes. Pretty soon I struck into a sort of path that, I cal'lated, might lead to the road I was hunting for. It twisted and turned, and, the first thing I knew, made a sudden bend around a bunch of bayberry scrub and opened out into a big clear space like a lawn.
- The sudden drop in temperature left everyone cold and confused.
- (obsolete) Hastily prepared or employed; quick; rapid.
- Never was such a sudden scholar made.
- the apples of Asphaltis, appearing goodly to the sudden eye
- (obsolete) Hasty; violent; rash; precipitate.
- I have no joy of this contract to-night: It is too rash, too unadvised, too sudden
- (poetic) Suddenly.
- Herbs of every leaf that sudden flowered.
sudden (plural suddens)
- (obsolete) An unexpected occurrence; a surprise.