aberrant

adjective
ab·​er·​rant | \ a-ˈber-ənt How to pronounce aberrant (audio) , ə-, -ˈbe-rənt; ˈa-bə-rənt, -ˌber-ənt, -ˌbe-rənt How to pronounce aberrant (audio) \

Definition of aberrant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : deviating from the usual or natural type : atypical, abnormal aberrant behavior I don't intend to suggest that his psychology was in some way aberrant or neurotic …— Michael Chabon
2 : straying from the right or normal way aberrant misfits

aberrant

noun
ab·​er·​rant | \ a-ˈber-ənt How to pronounce aberrant (audio) , ə-, -ˈbe-rənt; ˈa-bə-rənt, -ˌber-ənt, -ˌbe-rənt\

Definition of aberrant (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a group, individual, or structure that is not normal or typical : an aberrant group, individual, or structure
2 : a person whose behavior departs substantially from the standard

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Other Words from aberrant

Adjective

aberrance \ -​ən(t)s How to pronounce aberrance (audio) \ noun
aberrancy \ -​ən(t)-​sē How to pronounce aberrancy (audio) \ noun
aberrantly adverb

Did You Know?

Something aberrant has wandered away from the usual path or form. The word is generally used in a negative way; aberrant behavior, for example, may be a symptom of other problems. But the discovery of an aberrant variety of a species can be exciting news to a biologist, and identifying an aberrant gene has led the way to new treatments for diseases.

Examples of aberrant in a Sentence

Adjective

The stones, silvered in the moon's aberrant light, shone like spectral tombs, and the figures, which Dalgliesh knew were Helena, Lettie and the Bostocks, became discarnate shapes disappearing into the darkness. — P. D. James, The Private Patient, 2008 … as if he had happily spied an aberrant crocus amid the wintry gray scene of Presidential impeachment. — Francis X. Clines, New York Times, 8 Jan. 1999 … at the brief and aberrant moment in time when it was possible to believe that America owed its great place in the world to its military and moral virtue rather than to the weight of its currency. — Lewis H. Lapham, Harper's, March 1992 a year of aberrant weather—record rainfall in the summer, record heat in the autumn aberrant behavior can be a sign of rabies in a wild animal
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Green described Oyekanmi’s conduct as aberrant from the work performed by correctional officers across the state. Dan Morse, Washington Post, "‘An enormous abuse of the trust,’ judge tells former jail officer sentenced for sex act with inmate," 26 Jan. 2018 Google, for example, has had to deal with aberrant data submitted by users for Google Translate through its user feedback feature, causing some interesting translation results. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "Data vandal changes name of New York City to “Jewtropolis” across multiple apps [Updated]," 30 Aug. 2018 These trail blazers are slowly normalizing what never should have been made aberrant. Jill Gleeson, Good Housekeeping, "Menopause Doesn't Make Me Invisible," 5 Oct. 2018 In complex organisms such as humans, protection comes in part from having an immune system to destroy aberrant cells. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "The momentous transition to multicellular life may not have been so hard after all," 28 June 2018 Many Republicans regard the race as aberrant because of Bannon’s intense desire to unseat Republican incumbent Luther Strange. Alexander Nazaryan, Newsweek, "Can Donald Trump, the Most Unpopular President Ever, Save Republicans From a Massive Defeat in 2018?," 21 Feb. 2018 But new parents who turn to search engines to understand the practice will find an aberrant—and dangerous—strain of thinking. Renee Diresta, WIRED, "The Complexity of Simply Searching for Medical Advice," 3 July 2018 When creating a notable renovation on an otherwise dull block, isn’t there a danger of the home looking a bit aberrant? R. Daniel Foster, latimes.com, "Orange County's boring 'burbs get HGTV makeovers," 22 June 2018 Immigration experts acknowledged that Trump’s surprise election may have been responsible for the severe, historically aberrant drop in border arrests in 2017. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "The Immigration Forces Beyond Trump’s Control," 8 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'aberrant.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of aberrant

Adjective

circa 1536, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Noun

1840, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for aberrant

Adjective

borrowed from Latin aberrant-, aberrans, present participle of aberrāre "to wander away, stray, go wrong," from ab- ab- + errāre "to wander, drift, be in error" — more at err

Noun

noun derivative of aberrant entry 1

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Statistics for aberrant

Last Updated

30 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for aberrant

The first known use of aberrant was circa 1536

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More Definitions for aberrant

aberrant

adjective
ab·​er·​rant | \ a-ˈber-ənt How to pronounce aberrant (audio) , ə-; ˈab-ə-rənt How to pronounce aberrant (audio) , -ˌe(ə)r-ənt\

Medical Definition of aberrant

1 : straying from the right or normal way aberrant behavior
2 : deviating from the usual or natural type : atypical sense 1 aberrant salivary tissue

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More from Merriam-Webster on aberrant

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with aberrant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for aberrant

Spanish Central: Translation of aberrant

Nglish: Translation of aberrant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of aberrant for Arabic Speakers

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