[syn: periodic, occasional]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Occasional \Oc*ca"sion*al\ ([o^]k*k[=a]"zh[u^]n*al), a. [Cf. F.
1. Occuring at times, but not constant, regular, or
systematic; made or happening as opportunity requires or
admits; casual; incidental; as, occasional remarks, or
The . . . occasional writing of the present times.
2. Produced by accident; as, the occasional origin of a
thing. [Obs.] --Sir T. Browne.
3. Of or pertaining to an occasion or to occasions; intended
for a specific occasion; for use only when needed, and not
Occasional cause (Metaph.), some circumstance preceding an
effect which, without being the real cause, becomes the
occasion of the action of the efficient cause; thus, the
act of touching gunpowder with fire is the occasional, but
not the efficient, cause of an explosion.
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
adj 1: occurring from time to time; "took an occasional glass of
2: occurring or appearing at usually irregular intervals;
"episodic in his affections"; "occasional headaches" [syn:
3: occurring from time to time; "casual employment"; "a casual
correspondence with a former teacher"; "an occasional worker"
[syn: casual, occasional]
4: recurring or reappearing from time to time; "periodic
feelings of anxiety" [syn: periodic, occasional]
Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:
74 Moby Thesaurus words for "occasional":
accessory, accidental, accompanying, additional, ado, adventitious,
afloat, afoot, aleatory, auxiliary, behind the scenes, by-the-way,
casual, causal, causative, ceremonial, circumstantial, conditional,
constitutive, contingent, current, decisive, determinative, doing,
effectual, etiological, eventuating, extra, few, formative,
going on, happening, in hand, in the wind, incidental, inessential,
infrequent, institutive, intermittent, irregular, nonessential,
occurring, odd, off, on, on foot, ongoing, originative,
out-of-the-way, parenthetical, part-time, particular, passing,
periodic, pivotal, prevailing, prevalent, provisional, random,
rare, resultant, ritual, scarce, seldom, side, spare, special,
sporadic, supplementary, taking place, uncommon, under way,
The Devil's Dictionary (1881-1906):
OCCASIONAL, adj. Afflicting us with greater or less frequency. That,
however, is not the sense in which the word is used in the phrase
"occasional verses," which are verses written for an "occasion," such
as an anniversary, a celebration or other event. True, they afflict
us a little worse than other sorts of verse, but their name has no
reference to irregular recurrence.