The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Intermittent \In`ter*mit"tent\, a. [L. intermittens, -entis, p.
pr. of intermittere: cf. F. intermittent.]
Coming and going at intervals; alternating; recurrent;
periodic; as, an intermittent fever. --Boyle.
Intermittent fever (Med.), a disease with fever which
recurs at certain intervals; -- applied particularly to
fever and ague. See Fever.
Intermittent gearing (Mach.), gearing which receives, or
produces, intermittent motion.
Intermittent springs, springs which flow at intervals, not
apparently dependent upon rain or drought. They probably
owe their intermittent action to their being connected
with natural reservoirs in hills or mountains by passages
having the form of a siphon, the water beginning to flow
when it has accumulated so as to fill the upper part of
the siphon, and ceasing when, by running through it, it
has fallen below the orifice of the upper part of the
siphon in the reservoir.