Definitions

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

  • adj. Not to be avoided or escaped; inevitable: "Those war plans rested on a belief in the ineluctable superiority of the offense over the defense” ( Jack Beatty).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Impossible to avoid or escape; inescapable, irresistible.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Not to be overcome by struggling; irresistible; inescapable; inevitable.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Not to be overcome or escaped from.

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

  • adj. impossible to avoid or evade:

Etymologies

Latin inēluctābilis : in-, not; see in-1 + ēluctābilis, penetrable (from ēluctārī, to struggle out of : ex-, ex- + luctārī, to struggle).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin inēluctābilis, from in- + ēluctor ("struggle out"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • "She stood on a tripod of stiff telescoping metal. her body had been altered for heavy labour, with pistons and pulleys giving her what looked like ineluctable strength." From Perdido Street Station by China Mieville.

    September 22, 2011

  • Day after Christmas, 2006, 5:43pm EST: ineluctable is the 100,000th word posted on Wordie. A Joycean word:

    "Ineluctable modality of the visible: At least that if no more, thought through my eyes. Signatures of all things I am here to read, seaspawn and seawrack , the nearing tide, that rusty boot. Snotgreen, bluesilver, rust: coloured signs. Limits of the diaphane. But he adds: in bodies. Then he was aware of them bodies before of them coloured. How? By knocking his sconce against them, sure. Go easy. Bald he was and a millionaire, maestro di color che sanno. Limit of the diaphane in. Why in? Diaphane, adiaphane. If you can put your five fingers through it, it is a gate, if not a door. Shut your eyes and see." - Ulysses, "Proteus"

    and later in the same chapter:

    "I throw this ended shadow from me, manshape ineluctable, call it back."

    December 27, 2006