Definitions

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

  • adj. Undergoing vacillation; wavering.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Vacillating; wavering; fluctuating; irresolute.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Vacillating; wavering; fluctuating; irresolute.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Vacillating; wavering; fluctuating; unsteady. [Rare.] Imp. Dict.

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

  • adj. uncertain in purpose or action

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Latin vacillans, present participle of vacillare: compare French vacillant. See vacillate.

Examples

  • Be vacillant over those vigilant who would leave you to belave black on white.

    Finnegans Wake

  • "That ideal, like any other, can only be approached asymptotically, never reached; and I, being somewhat foolish and silly, as well as weak and vacillant, am much less perfect than most."

    First Lensman

  • Fasse autour d’un grand feu vacillant dans la chambre

    Lorsque l'enfant paraît.…

  • He was at that time a weak and vacillant youth, given over to the same pleasures and vices which drove his father mad and caused his brother's death.

    Great Men and Famous Women. Vol. 5 of 8 A series of pen and pencil sketches of the lives of more than 200 of the most prominent personages in History

  • With hands now as steady and sure as they had been vacillant a moment since, he closed the safe door noiselessly, shot its bolts, and was yards away, crouching behind an armchair, before the man outside had ceased to fumble with the window fastenings.

    The False Faces Further Adventures from the History of the Lone Wolf

  • And life became as easy to bear as a vacillant vision seen in dream.

    The Created Legend

  • His look from behind the deceptive, vacillant shields was hot and evil; he poured out his dazzling light, tormented men with it, yet wished them to rejoice in his presence and to compose hymns to him.

    The Created Legend

  • He could by no means account for the light he seemed to see therein, a light that kindled while he watched like a tiny flame, feeble, fearful, vacillant, then as the moments passed steadied and grew stronger but ever leaped and danced; so that he, lost in the wonder of it and forgetful of himself, thought of it as the ardent face of a happy child dancing in the depths of some brown autumnal woodland ....

    The Lone Wolf A Melodrama

Comments

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

  • Be patient with Malcolm the malcontent.

    It’s not that he’s always recalcitrant,

    But suffers from bouts

    Of worries and doubts

    That make him reluctant and vacillant.

    June 5, 2018