extrinsic


extrinsic
extrinsic, extraneous, foreign, alien are comparable when they mean external to something or someone or to the true nature or original character of such thing or person.
Extrinsic applies to something which is distinctly outside the thing in question or is derived from something apart from it; thus, a ring may have extrinsic value because of sentimental or historical associations; such extrinsic influences as chance or the assistance of friends may help a man to succeed
{

[those] who would persuade us . . . that style is something extrinsic to the subject, a kind of ornamentation laid onQuiller-Couch

}
{

even life itself might arise from lifeless matter through the influence of favorable extrinsic conditions— Conklin

}
Extraneous, though often used interchangeably with extrinsic, applies more specifically to something which is introduced from outside and may or may not be capable of becoming an integral part of the thing
{

advance arguments extraneous to the real issue

}
{

water is rarely pure and free from extraneous matter

}
{

style ... is not—can never be— extraneous ornament— Quiller-Couch

}
{

whatever we gain comprehension of, we seize upon and assimilate into our own being . . .; that which had been extraneous is become a part of ourselves— H. B. Alexander

}
Foreign applies to something which is so different from the thing under consideration that it is either inadmissible because repellent or, if admitted, incapable of becoming identified with it, assimilated by it, or related to it
{

much coal contains foreign matter

}
{

inflammation caused by a foreign body in the eye

}
{

the mysticism so foreign to the French mind and temper— Brownell

}
{

look round our world .... Nothing is foreign: parts relate to whole . . . ; all served, all serving: nothing stands alone— Pope

}
Alien applies to something which is so foreign that it can never be made an inherent or an integral part of a thing. The word often suggests repugnance or at least incompatibility or irreconcilableness
{

a voluptuous devotionality . . . totally alien to the austerity and penetrating sincerity of the Gospel!— Inge

}
{

he would often adopt certain modes of thought that he knew to be really alien to his nature— Wilde

}
Analogous words: external, *outer, outside, exterior, outward: acquired, gained (see GET)
Antonyms: intrinsic
Contrasted words: internal, *inner, inside, inward, interior, intestine

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • extrinsic — ex·trin·sic /ek strin zik, sik/ adj: not contained in or occurring in something (as a contract) an extrinsic representation Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996. extrinsic …   Law dictionary

  • extrinsic — ex‧trin‧sic [ɪkˈstrɪnsɪk, zɪk] adjective [only before a noun] formal relating to matters which affect the outer appearance or behaviour of something * * * extrinsic UK US /ekˈstrɪnzɪk/ adjective ► coming from outside a particular person or thing …   Financial and business terms

  • extrinsic — [ek strin′sik, eks trin′zik; ik strin′sik, ikstrin′zik] adj. [Fr extrinseque < L extrinsecus, from without, outer < exter, without + secus, following, otherwise < base of sequi, to follow: see SEQUENT] 1. not really belonging to the… …   English World dictionary

  • Extrinsic — Ex*trin sic, a. [L. extrinsecus; exter on the outside + secus otherwise, beside; akin to E. second: cf. F. extrins[ e]que. See {Exterior}, {Second}.] 1. Not contained in or belonging to a body; external; outward; unessential; opposed to… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • extrinsic — 1540s, from Fr. extrinsèque, from L.L. extrinsecus (adj.), from L. extrinsecus (adv.) “outwardly,” from exter “outside” + in, suffix of locality, + secus “beside, alongside, originally following (related to sequi to follow; see SEQUEL… …   Etymology dictionary

  • extrinsic — [adj] foreign acquired, alien, exotic, exterior, external, extraneous, gained, imported, outer, outside, outward, superficial; concept 549 Ant. essential, integral, interior, intrinsic, necessary …   New thesaurus

  • extrinsic — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ not essential or inherent. DERIVATIVES extrinsically adverb. ORIGIN Latin extrinsecus outward …   English terms dictionary

  • extrinsic — exterior, external, extraneous, extrinsic 1. The four words are related, and all have meanings based on outside. Exterior and external both refer to the outside of things in contrast to the inside • (Most manufacturers describe their exterior… …   Modern English usage

  • extrinsic — adjective Etymology: French & Late Latin; French extrinsèque, from Late Latin extrinsecus, from Latin, adverb, from without; akin to Latin exter outward and to Latin sequi to follow more at exterior, sue Date: 1613 1. a. not forming part of or… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • extrinsic — extrinsically, adv. /ik strin sik, zik/, adj. 1. not essential or inherent; not a basic part or quality; extraneous: facts that are extrinsic to the matter under discussion. 2. being outside a thing; outward or external; operating or coming from… …   Universalium


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.