• WordNet 3.6
    • adj volatile tending to vary often or widely "volatile stocks","volatile emotions"
    • adj volatile marked by erratic changeableness in affections or attachments "fickle friends","a flirt's volatile affections"
    • adj volatile liable to lead to sudden change or violence "an explosive issue","a volatile situation with troops and rioters eager for a confrontation"
    • adj volatile evaporating readily at normal temperatures and pressures "volatile oils","volatile solvents"
    • n volatile a volatile substance; a substance that changes readily from solid or liquid to a vapor "it was heated to evaporate the volatiles"
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: 'Crack' is the street name given to cocaine that has been processed from cocaine hydrochloride to a free base for smoking. Rather than requiring the more volatile method of processing cocaine using ether, crack cocaine is processed with ammonia or sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and water and heated to remove the hydrochloride, thus producing a form of cocaine that can be smoked.
    • n Volatile A winged animal; wild fowl; game.
    • Volatile Capable of wasting away, or of easily passing into the aëriform state; subject to evaporation.
    • Volatile Fig.: Light-hearted; easily affected by circumstances; airy; lively; hence, changeable; fickle; as, a volatile temper. "You are as giddy and volatile as ever."
    • Volatile Passing through the air on wings, or by the buoyant force of the atmosphere; flying; having the power to fly.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • volatile Having the power of being readily converted into gas or vapor. Sometimes applied, in chemistry, to those constituents, or that portion, of a substance which is driven off by heating at a specified temperature.
    • volatile Flying, or able to fly; having the power of flight; volant; volitant.
    • volatile Having the quality of taking flight or passing off by spontaneous evaporation; evaporating rapidly; becoming diffused more or less freely in the atmosphere.
    • volatile Lively; brisk; gay; full of spirit; airy; hence, fickle; apt to change: as, a volatile disposition.
    • volatile Transient; not permanent; not lasting.
    • n volatile A winged creature, as a bird or butterfly.
    • n volatile Wild fowl collectively.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Volatile evaporating very quickly: flighty: apt to change
    • ***


  • Jonathan Swift
    “As love without esteem is capricious and volatile; esteem without love is languid and cold.”
  • George Santayana
    “It takes patience to appreciate domestic bliss; volatile spirits prefer unhappiness.”
  • Henry David Thoreau
    “The volatile truth of our words should continually betray the inadequacy of the residual statement.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. volatil, L. volatilis, fr. volare, to fly, perhaps akin to velox, swift, E. velocity,. Cf. Volley
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr.,—L. volans, antis, pr.p. of volāre, to fly.


In literature:

Volatile (fickle) = flirtema.
"English-Esperanto Dictionary" by John Charles O'Connor and Charles Frederic Hayes
It is volatile and has the odor of camphor.
"Scientific American Supplement, No. 711, August 17, 1889" by Various
You can easily distract an aged man's volatile affections, and attach them to a new charmer.
"The Disentanglers" by Andrew Lang
The "taste" of food is mostly due to the volatile odors of it that creep up the back-stairs into the olfactory chamber.
"Creative Chemistry" by Edwin E. Slosson
He could evade the questions of the volatile Winnie, but there was no getting by Kathlyn with evasions.
"The Adventures of Kathlyn" by Harold MacGrath
This condenses the steam which contains the volatile oils and thus darkens the vegetable.
"Mrs. Wilson's Cook Book" by Mary A. Wilson
The musician appeals to the public with volatile and elusive sounds.
"How to Listen to Music, 7th ed." by Henry Edward Krehbiel
Is it because they are volatile, changeful, baffling?
"American Adventures" by Julian Street
Volatile, masterful and above all human he is at once the most consistent and inconsistent of men.
"The War After the War" by Isaac Frederick Marcosson
Storri was excitable, volatile, full of fever and impulse, prone to go off at tangents.
"The President" by Alfred Henry Lewis

In poetry:

The sacred page my state describes
From volatile and reptile tribes;
From ugly vipers, beauteous birds;
From soaring hosts, and swinish herds.
"The Believer's Riddle; or, the Mystery of Faith" by Ralph Erskine
Take mountebanks, prancers,
Fops, fiddlers, and dancers,
So volatile, versatile, nimble; Pimps, parasites, spyers, Apostates, rogues, liars,
State coblers; and knights of the thimble.
"Recipe To make A French Legion of Honour" by Thomas Stott

In news:

Race is small but volatile word.
Though Gunplay is calmer in person than you might imagine after listening to his mixtapes, he's obviously pretty volatile.
Using Rally to Go Long Volatility.
Music and celebrity can be a volatile mix.
Stock Options With Biggest Changes in Implied Volatility.
Top Volatility Increases Contract %Chg Impl.
Volatility is the new normal OK, got that.
Volatility Roiling IT Job Market, Report Finds.
The Dow Jones industrial average dropped by triple digits for the fourth time in just over a week, as market volatility reached near-record levels.
WHEN it came to stock market volatility, 2011 was pretty close to the mother of all roller-coaster rides.
The recent volatility in financial markets has been widely discussed in the media, and has been a growing concern among investors.
Volatility bailed out S&P, Dow, but stats remain questionable.
Millennials came of age during a volatile time of market booms and busts, skyrocketing tuition costs and an increasingly competitive job market.
The October data on new home sales came in below analyst expectations, but the monthly figures can be volatile.
Volatility is certain next year.

In science:

Let us denote the implied Black-Scholes volatility by σ ε (K, τ ) .
Stochastic arbitrage return and its implications for option pricing
Let us denote the implied Black-Scholes volatility by σ ε (K, τ ) .
Volatility smile and stochastic arbitrage returns
Model parameters are estimated by observing volatility scaling and correlation properties.
Underlying Dynamics of Typical Fluctuations of an Emerging Market Price Index: The Heston Model from Minutes to Months
However it has been shown that very large data sets are required in order to distinguish between a multifractal and power law tailed process and a stochastic volatility model.
Underlying Dynamics of Typical Fluctuations of an Emerging Market Price Index: The Heston Model from Minutes to Months
The long term volatility θ and the relaxation time γ−1 have been estimated in the previous sections.
Underlying Dynamics of Typical Fluctuations of an Emerging Market Price Index: The Heston Model from Minutes to Months