• WordNet 3.6
    • adj erratic liable to sudden unpredictable change "erratic behavior","fickle weather","mercurial twists of temperament","a quicksilver character, cool and willful at one moment, utterly fragile the next"
    • adj erratic likely to perform unpredictably; sometimes it would start and sometimes it wouldn't" "erratic winds are the bane of a sailor","a temperamental motor","that beautiful but temperamental instrument the flute"- Osbert Lancaster"
    • adj erratic having no fixed course "an erratic comet","his life followed a wandering course","a planetary vagabond"
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Erratic A rogue.
    • Erratic (Geol) Any stone or material that has been borne away from its original site by natural agencies; esp., a large block or fragment of rock; a bowlder.
    • Erratic Deviating from a wise of the common course in opinion or conduct; eccentric; strange; queer; as, erratic conduct.
    • Erratic Having no certain course; roving about without a fixed destination; wandering; moving; -- hence, applied to the planets as distinguished from the fixed stars. "The earth and each erratic world."
    • Erratic Irregular; changeable. "Erratic fever."
    • Erratic One who deviates from common and accepted opinions; one who is eccentric or preserve in his intellectual character.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • erratic Wandering; having no certain course; roving about without a fixed destination.
    • erratic Deviating from the proper or usual course in opinion or conduct; eccentric.
    • erratic Moving; not fixed or stationary: applied to the planets as distinguished from the fixed stars.
    • erratic In medicine, irregular; changeable; moving from point to point, as rheumatic or other pains, or appearing at indeterminate intervals, as some intermittent fevers.
    • erratic In geology, relating to or explanatory of the condition and distribution of erratics. See II., 2.
    • n erratic One who or that which has wandered; a wanderer.
    • n erratic Specifically In geology, a boulder or block which has been conveyed from its original site, probably by ice, and deposited at a distance; an erratic block. See erratic blocks, under I.
    • n erratic An eccentric person.
    • erratic In zoology, occurring in an unusual location.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Erratic a wanderer: an erratic boulder
    • adjs Erratic wandering: having no certain course: not stationary: irregular
    • ***


  • Nicolas Bentley
    Nicolas Bentley
    “He followed in his father's footsteps, but his gait was somewhat erratic.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. erraticus, fr. errare, to wander: cf. F. erratique,. See Err
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr. errer—L. errāre, to stray; cog. with Ger. irren, and irre, astray.


In literature:

Reaction to this form of injury is characterized by inflammation, the course of which is erratic and variable.
"Lameness of the Horse" by John Victor Lacroix
The toiler up the hill, too, had need of all his alertness to dodge the numerous erratic cars tearing down in every direction.
"Bluebell" by Mrs. George Croft Huddleston
His movements were erratic to the verge of mystery.
"The Grey Wig: Stories and Novelettes" by Israel Zangwill
You are too hopelessly natural, erratic, and impulsive.
"The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 4, No. 23, September, 1859" by Various
Masterless, the sloop sailed, laid to, started off again erratically, and after many shifts ran off before this stiffer wind.
"Poor Man's Rock" by Bertrand W. Sinclair
It was said that he once met an alien person walking in the woods, and that this erratic foreigner was smoking a pipe.
"The Romance of the Coast" by James Runciman
Meanwhile the Americans on the Wall are behaving more erratically than ever.
"Indiscreet Letters From Peking"
As for Churchill, he's too restless and erratic and dictatorial and fussy and he runs about too much.
"The Life and Letters of Walter H. Page, Volume II" by Burton J. Hendrick
He only saw some hundreds of yards down it, but the prospect served to convince him that his erratic aunt was late.
"The Half-Hearted" by John Buchan
He includes the writer's "erratic" tests and some others which are "erratic" the other way.
"Some Mooted Questions in Reinforced Concrete Design" by Edward Godfrey

In poetry:

For the time of this ecstatic
Amateur was most erratic,
And he only hit the key
Once in every melody.
"The Waster Singing at Midnight" by Robert Fuller Murray
That whole day long the Taylor pup
This way and that did hie
Upon his mad, erratic course,
Intent on getting dry.
"The Ballad Of The Taylor Pup" by Eugene Field
In wild meanderings o'er pasture wealth--
Erratic wanderings through dead'ning lands,
Where sly old brambles, plucking me by stealth,
Put berries in my hands:
"A Country Pathway" by James Whitcomb Riley
Yes, 'tis Reflection's chosen hour; for then,
With pensive pleasure mingling o'er the scene,
Th' erratic mind treads over life again,
And gazes on the past with eye serene.
"Lines Written At Brighton" by Sir John Carr
Erratic pilgrim! go not yet!
And, each fair planet, do not set!
For once, if only once, O Time!
Stay thine interminable march
Round and still round that hollow arch,
Where aeons vainly chime.
"Celestial Heights" by Alfred Austin
Of course she may have done some good,
But then, most any woman could
Who had the muscle and a hatchet,
With Irish wit as keen to match it;
Yet smashing windows so erratic
Soon proved her just a plain fanatic.
"Carrie Nation" by Willard Wattles

In news:

Erratic Gallinari's dagger beats NBA's hottest team.
Source says Bynum's behavior erratic even before 3-point fiasco.
Logic, PB&J can't explain Texas Tech's erratic season.
Erratic driving leads to fatal wreck on Route 100 Wednesday.
Energy prices fluctuate in erratic markets.
Energy prices remained erratic Sept 14 with front-month crude contracts giving back much of the previous day's gain in the New York market while recovering some of its earlier loss in London.
Balanced design and sustainable energy solutions lend protection against erratic temperatures.
Denise Richards Used Children's Book on Addiction to Explain Charlie Sheen's Erratic Behavior to Daughters.
Enjoy Phillies' staff instead of fretting over erratic offense.
As expected, corn and soybean prices continue to move erratically in a very wide range.
Elks erratic in 10-2 loss to Pirates.
Erratic 'Hanna' beats down talents of young star.
The psychology of his erratic behavior.
Erratic Pittsburgh team looks for consistency.
Residents near a privately owned New Mexico ghost town have been ordered to evacuate as a blaze in the Gila National Forest continued to burn erratically.

In science:

For the problem of PT it was found that the erraticity indices turn out to be very small (of order 10−3) , smaller than what experimental data can probably resolve.
Critical Behavior of Hadronic Fluctuations and the Effect of Final-State Randomization
What is proposed in (24)-(26) is not erraticity analysis, and is not aimed at studying the fluctuations from configuration-to-configuration.
Critical Behavior of Hadronic Fluctuations and the Effect of Final-State Randomization
For a typical matrix F the time dependence of the form factor |tn |2 looks erratic; only after a local time average over a suitably large time window ∆n does a systematic time dependence become manifest.
Fluctuations and Ergodicity of the Form Factor of Quantum Propagators and Random Unitary Matrices
Without such averaging the form factor would display erratic variations not at all resembling the smooth behavior predicted by random-matrix theory for averages of matrix ensembles.
Fluctuations and Ergodicity of the Form Factor of Quantum Propagators and Random Unitary Matrices
This pulsar is seen in the animation to stabilise into its characteristic 3-component form after the summation of a number of seemingly erratic single pulses.
Binary and Millisecond Pulsars at the New Millennium