Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Characterized by intense activity, confusion, or haste: "There was nothing feverish or hectic about his vigor” ( Erik Erikson).
  • adj. Medicine Of, relating to, or being a fever that fluctuates during the day, as in tuberculosis or septicemia.
  • adj. Consumptive; feverish.
  • adj. Flushed.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of a fever, pertaining to bodily reactions characterised by flushed or dry skin.
  • adj. Very busy with activity and confusion; feverish.
  • n. A hectic fever.
  • n. A flush like one produced by such a fever.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Habitual; constitutional; pertaining especially to slow waste of animal tissue, as in consumption
  • adj. In a hectic condition; having hectic fever; consumptive.
  • n. Hectic fever.
  • n. A hectic flush.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Habitual; marking a particular habit or condition of body: applied to fever of the form presented in phthisis, characterized by marked diurnal remissions and exacerbations, and accompanied with flushed cheeks, hot skin, and emaciation.
  • Pertaining to or affected with such fever; feverish; consumptive: as, a hectic flush.
  • n. A hectic fever; a wasting away, attended by heightened color.
  • n. A hectic flush.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. marked by intense agitation or emotion

Etymologies

Middle English etik, recurring, consumptive, from Old French etique, from Late Latin hecticus, from Greek hektikos, from hexis, habit, from ekhein, to be in a certain condition; see segh- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French etique, from Medieval Latin *hecticus, from Ancient Greek έκτικός (ektikos, "habitual, hectic, consumptive"), from έξις (exis, "a state or habit of body or of mind, condition"), from έξειν (exein, "to have, hold, intransitive be in a certain state"). (Wiktionary)

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