adulterine

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj adulterine conceived in adultery
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Adulterine An illegitimate child.
    • a Adulterine Proceeding from adulterous intercourse. Hence: Spurious; without the support of law; illegal. "When any particular class of artificers or traders thought proper to act as a corporation without a charter, such were called adulterine guilds."
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • adulterine Of adulterous origin; born of adultery.
    • adulterine Relating or pertaining to adultery; involving or implying adultery: as, adulterine fiction; adulterine marriage (used by St. Augustine of a second marriage after divorce).
    • adulterine Characterized by adulteration; spurious; base: as, adulterine drugs or metals.
    • adulterine Illegitimate; illicit; unauthorized: as, adulterine castles (castles built by the Norman barons in England, after the conquest, without royal warrant).
    • n adulterine In civil law, a child begotten in adultery.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Adulterine resulting from adultery: spurious
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Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. adulterinus, fr. adulter,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
O. Fr. avoutrie, avoutre, an adulterer—L. adulterum, prob. from ad, to, and alter, another. The modern form of the word is due to a later approximation to the Latin form.

Usage

In literature:

He sent Stephen's mercenaries over the sea and completed the destruction of the 'adulterine castles.
"A Student's History of England, v. 1 (of 3)" by Samuel Rawson Gardiner
Abrogation of every law establishing the civil inferiority of women and natural or adulterine children.
"Socialism and Democracy in Europe" by Samuel P. Orth
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In poetry:

to manage a baroque staircase, or the art
of believing footmen don't hear
human speech. (In adulterine castles
our half-strong might hang their jackets
"Thanksgiving for a Habitat" by W H Auden