occasional

adjective
oc·​ca·​sion·​al | \ ə-ˈkāzh-nəl, -ˈkā-zhə-nᵊl\

Definition of occasional 

1a : of or relating to a particular occasion a budget able to meet occasional demands as well as regular ones
b : created for a particular occasion occasional verse occasional music
2 : acting as the occasion or contributing cause of something occasional causes for creating apparent effects
3 : encountered, occurring, appearing, or taken at irregular or infrequent intervals occasional visitors an occasional vacation found occasional errors occasional episodes of chest pain
4 : acting in a specified capacity from time to time an occasional lecturer an occasional essayist
5 : designed or constructed to be used as the occasion demands occasional furniture

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Examples of occasional in a Sentence

She receives occasional phone calls from her mother. There will be occasional showers during the morning. Most mornings, we'll see deer or the occasional bear walking past our house. He tells an occasional joke to keep his students interested. I need to take occasional breaks from work. Sure, I drink an occasional glass of wine from time to time. She's an occasional lecturer at the university.
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Recent Examples on the Web

But for the occasional lipsmack of the sea, the night silence is absolute. Horatio Clare, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why You Should Go to Belize Now," 21 Dec. 2018 Despite the occasional creak, the play’s wit and complex characters, as well as a couple of terrific 1920s gowns, are a treat. Alexis Soloski, New York Times, "12 Plays and Musicals to Go to in N.Y.C. This Weekend," 12 July 2018 He brought badly needed stability and occasional playmaking to this linebacker unit in the second half of last season. Andy Benoit, SI.com, "Jon Gruden Is Back, With a Big Rebuilding Job: 10 Thoughts on the Raiders," 18 June 2018 Avocados quickly went from occasional treat at your local Mexican joint to a prized grocery store staple in a matter of a decade. Samantha Cassetty, NBC News, "11 delicious avocado recipes that don't involve avocado toast," 1 June 2018 Two of Lamoureux’s teammates, Meghan Duggan and Haley Skarupa, have found occasional on-air work in their local markets as well. Sam Donnellon, Philly.com, "A.J. Mleczko, NHL broadcasting pioneer, leaves chauvinists little to complain about," 8 May 2018 From the occasional pimple to blackheads littering your nose, there are so many different variations of acne. Kelsey Castañon, Seventeen, "Everything You Need to Know About Acne — and How to Get Rid of It," 4 Dec. 2018 Presumably these issues will be part of the same update that will fix the random extra-notch behavior and the camera’s occasional inability to save a photo. Michael Simon, PCWorld, "Google offers Pixel 3XL users free Play Store credit, promises bug fixes 'in the coming weeks'," 6 Nov. 2018 My mandate is to break news and write features of impact and guest-host the occasional podcast. Eric Johnson, Recode, "The media is responsible for President Trump and it still hasn’t learned from 2016, says Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibbi," 18 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'occasional.' 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 occasional

1611, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for occasional

Middle English occasyonal "occurring at intervals," borrowed from Medieval Latin occāsiōnālis "opportune, incidental," from occāsiōn-, occāsiō occasion entry 1 + Latin -ālis -al entry 1

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Statistics for occasional

Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for occasional

The first known use of occasional was in 1611

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More Definitions for occasional

occasional

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of occasional

: happening or done sometimes but not often : not happening or done in a regular or frequent way

: sometimes doing a particular job or activity

occasional

adjective
oc·​ca·​sion·​al | \ ə-ˈkā-zhə-nᵊl \

Kids Definition of occasional

: happening or met with now and then They went to an occasional movie.

Other Words from occasional

occasionally adverb

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Comments on occasional

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