Definition of adulterine in English:

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Pronunciation: /əˈdʌlt(ə)rʌɪn/


1(Of a child) born as the result of an adulterous relationship.
Example sentences
  • In any event, the adulterine child could not be reproached with events which were not his fault.
  • The restriction of adulterine children's inheritance rights is the subject of much criticism.
  • An adulterine child born after the termination of the step parent relationship may qualify as a step child.
2 archaic Illegal, unlicensed, or spurious: an adulterine castle
More example sentences
  • This was found on a hearth contemporary with Rampart 4, which constitutes the final heightening of the rampart of the Iron Age hill-fort and its defence by timber structures, perhaps as an adulterine castle in the civil wars of Stephen's reign.
  • When he had taken these two adulterine castles and given back to the monastery of St. John the domains that had been seized, he returned to the city of Amiens and laid siege to a tower of that city.
  • Of the adulterine castles characteristic of the anarchy of Stephen's reign, hardly one can be identified with certainty to-day - it may be, indeed, that earthworks commonly thought to be British are relics of these very castles.


Mid 18th century (in the sense 'due to adulteration'): from Latin adulterinus, from adulterare 'debauch, corrupt'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: adul¦ter|ine

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