capricious

Capricious is an adjective to describe a person or thing that's impulsive and unpredictable, like a bride who suddenly leaves her groom standing at the wedding altar.

You can criticize a fickle-minded person as capricious, but it could just as well describe quickly changing weather, as in "capricious spring storms." It's the adjective form of the noun caprice, which means a sudden change of mood. Caprice might come from capra, the Italian word for "goat" (because goats are frisky), or from capo, "head" + riccio, "hedgehog." Why bring hedgehogs into it? If you have a "hedgehog head," you are so scared that your hair is standing straight on end. A scared person makes sudden starts this way and that, just as a capricious person does.

Definitions of capricious
  1. adjective
    determined by chance or impulse or whim rather than by necessity or reason
    “a capricious refusal”
    “authoritarian rulers are frequently capricious
    synonyms: impulsive, whimsical
    arbitrary
    based on or subject to individual discretion or preference or sometimes impulse or caprice
  2. adjective
    changeable
    “a capricious summer breeze”
    synonyms: freakish
    unpredictable
    not capable of being foretold
Word Family
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