Vicarious Vi*ca"ri*ous, a. [L. vicarius, from vicis change, alternation, turn, the position, place, or office of one person as assumed by another; akin to Gr. ? to yield, give way, G. wechsel a change, and probably also to E. weak. See {Weak}, and cf. {Vice}, prep.] 1. Of or pertaining to a vicar, substitute, or deputy; deputed; delegated; as, vicarious power or authority. [1913 Webster]

2. Acting of suffering for another; as, a vicarious agent or officer. [1913 Webster]

The soul in the body is but a subordinate efficient, and vicarious . . . in the hands of the Almighty. --Sir M. Hale. [1913 Webster]

3. Performed of suffered in the place of another; substituted; as, a vicarious sacrifice; vicarious punishment. [1913 Webster]

The vicarious work of the Great Deliverer. --I. Taylor. [1913 Webster]

4. (Med.) Acting as a substitute; -- said of abnormal action which replaces a suppressed normal function; as, vicarious hemorrhage replacing menstruation. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

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  • vicarious — vi·car·i·ous /vī kar ē əs/ adj: imposed on one person in place of another see also vicarious liability at liability 2b vi·car·i·ous·ly adv vi·car·i·ous·ness n …   Law dictionary

  • vicarious — [vī ker′ē əs, viker′ē əs] adj. [L vicarius, substituted: see VICAR] 1. a) taking the place of another thing or person; substitute; deputy b) held or handled by one person as the deputy of another; delegated [vicarious powers] 2. a) e …   English World dictionary

  • vicarious — (adj.) 1630s, from L. vicarius substitute, deputy (adj. and n.), from vicis turn, change, exchange, substitution, from PIE root *weik , *weig to bend, wind (Cf. Skt. visti changing, changeable; O.E. wician to give way, yield, wice wych elm; O.N.… …   Etymology dictionary

  • vicarious — [adj] done or felt for, or on behalf of, another by proxy, commissioned, delegated, deputed, empathetic, eventual, imagined, indirect, pretended, secondary, substituted, substitutional, surrogate, sympathetic; concepts 401,538 …   New thesaurus

  • vicarious — ► ADJECTIVE 1) experienced in the imagination through the feelings or actions of another person. 2) acting or done for another. DERIVATIVES vicariously adverb. ORIGIN from Latin vicarius substitute …   English terms dictionary

  • vicarious — adjective Etymology: Latin vicarius, from vicis change, alternation, stead more at week Date: 1637 1. a. serving instead of someone or something else b. that has been delegated < vicarious authority > 2. performed or suffered by one person as a… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • vicarious — [[t]vɪke͟əriəs, AM vaɪkæ̱r [/t]] ADJ: ADJ n A vicarious pleasure or feeling is experienced by watching, listening to, or reading about other people doing something, rather than by doing it yourself. She invents fantasy lives for her own vicarious …   English dictionary

  • vicarious — adj. 1 experienced in the imagination through another person (vicarious pleasure). 2 acting or done for another (vicarious suffering). 3 deputed, delegated (vicarious authority). Derivatives: vicariously adv. vicariousness n. Etymology: L… …   Useful english dictionary

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