Share this entry

Share this page

quixotic

Syllabification: quix·ot·ic
Pronunciation: /kwikˈsädik
 
/

Definition of quixotic in English:

adjective

Exceedingly idealistic; unrealistic and impractical: a vast and perhaps quixotic project
More example sentences
  • Others existed only as working hypotheses, unrealized plans or quixotic fantasies.
  • His quixotic, idealist appeal for justice contrasts sharply with the rest of the exhibition, in which justice does not seem to be expected.
  • It is an old-fashioned project, and a quixotic one, but deeply moving in its hope that Wyclif's Bible and Burns's songs form an inheritance we would all want, if only we knew about it.
Synonyms
idealistic, romantic, visionary, utopian, extravagant, starry-eyed, unrealistic, unworldly;
impractical, impracticable, unworkable, impossible

Origin

late 18th century: from Don Quixote + -ic.

More
  • A quixotic person is idealistic, unrealistic, and impractical, like the hero of the Spanish novel Don Quixote ( 1605–15) by Miguel de Cervantes. Don Quixote is a middle-aged country gentleman obsessed with tales of chivalry who decides to become a knight and rides out with his squire Sancho Panza in search of adventure. See also tilt

Derivatives

quixotically

1
Pronunciation: /-ik(ə)lē/
adverb
Example sentences
  • That sounds quixotically noble, this stand for the ‘inviolability of marriage.’
  • He also seems to write with little concern for cadence, leaving himself stumbling over excess syllables and quixotically stuffing verbal square pegs into musical round holes when it comes time to sing.
  • The pioneers of wind energy are an iconoclastic lot, tilting, if you will, at the windmills of conventional energy wisdom and quixotically persisting in the face of difference and opposition.

quixotism

2
Pronunciation: /ˈkwiksəˌtizəm/
noun

quixotry

3
Pronunciation: /ˈkwiksətrē/
noun
Example sentences
  • This was an opportune moment to address the issue of the oppression of animals, until then catalogued in the annals of quixotry, as a serious moral problem.

Definition of quixotic in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day cumbersome
Pronunciation: ˈkəmbərsəm
adjective
large or heavy and therefore difficult to carry…