fluctuate

play
verb fluc·tu·ate \ˈflək-chə-ˌwāt, -chü-ˌāt\

Definition of fluctuate

fluctuated

;

fluctuating

  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 :  to shift back and forth uncertainly Oil prices fluctuated. Temperatures fluctuated.

  3. 2 :  to rise and fall in or as if in waves The boat fluctuated on the rough sea.

  4. transitive verb
  5. :  to cause to fluctuate

fluctuation

play \ˌflək-chə-ˈwā-shən, -chü-ˈā-\ noun

fluctuational

play \ˌflək-chə-ˈwā-shnəl, -shə-nəl, -chü-ˈā-\ adjective

Examples of fluctuate in a sentence

  1. His popularity has fluctuated during his term in office.

  2. In the desert, the temperature fluctuates dramatically.

Origin and Etymology of fluctuate

Latin fluctuatus, past participle of fluctuare, from fluctus flow, wave, from fluere — more at fluid


First Known Use: 1604

Synonym Discussion of fluctuate

swing, sway, oscillate, vibrate, fluctuate, waver, undulate mean to move from one direction to its opposite. swing implies a movement of something attached at one end or one side the door suddenly swung open. sway implies a slow swinging or teetering movement trees swaying in the breeze. oscillate stresses a usually regular alternation of direction an oscillating fan. vibrate suggests the rapid oscillation of an elastic body under stress or impact the vibrating strings of a piano. fluctuate suggests constant irregular changes of level, intensity, or value fluctuating interest rates. waver stresses irregular motion suggestive of reeling or tottering the exhausted runner wavered before collapsing. undulate suggests a gentle wavelike motion an undulating sea of grass.

FLUCTUATE Defined for English Language Learners

fluctuate

play
verb fluc·tu·ate \ˈflək-chə-ˌwāt, -chü-ˌāt\

Definition of fluctuate for English Language Learners

  • : to change level, strength, or value frequently


FLUCTUATE Defined for Kids

fluctuate

play
verb fluc·tu·ate \ˈflək-chə-ˌwāt\

Definition of fluctuate for Students

fluctuated

;

fluctuating

  1. :  to change continually and especially up and down The temperature fluctuated.



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