oblique[ō blēk′, ə-; also, esp. in mil. use, -blīk′]
- An example of oblique is a kitchen table that isn't arranged straight in the center of the kitchen, but that is instead tilted at an angle away from the walls and cabinets.
- An example of oblique is an argument that has no clear point or thesis to it.
- having a slanting position or direction; neither perpendicular nor horizontal; not level or upright; inclined
- not straight to the point; not straightforward; indirect
- evasive, disingenuous, underhanded, etc.
- indirectly aimed at or attained: oblique results
- Anat. designating or of any of certain muscles obliquely placed and attached
- Bot. having the sides unequal, as some leaves
- Geom. with its axis not perpendicular to its base: an oblique cone
- Gram. designating or of any case except the nominative and the vocative
Origin of obliqueMiddle English oblike ; from Classical Latin obliquus ; from ob- (see ob-) + liquis, awry ; from Indo-European an unverified form leik-, variant, variety of base an unverified form elei-, to bend from source ell
- a. Having a slanting or sloping direction, course, or position; inclined.b. Mathematics Designating geometric lines or planes that are neither parallel nor perpendicular.
- Botany Having the part on one side of the midrib of a different size or shape than the part on the other side. Used of a leaf.
- Anatomy Situated in a slanting position; not transverse or longitudinal: oblique muscles or ligaments.
- a. Indirect or evasive: oblique political maneuvers.b. Devious, misleading, or dishonest: gave oblique answers to the questions.
- Not direct in descent; collateral.
- Grammar Designating any noun case except the nominative or the vocative.
- An oblique thing, such as a line, direction, or muscle.
- Nautical The act of changing course by less than 90°.
Origin of obliqueMiddle English, from Old French, from Latin oblīquus.
(comparative obliquer, superlative obliquest)
- Not erect or perpendicular; neither parallel to, nor at right angles from, the base; slanting; inclined.
- Not straightforward; indirect; obscure; hence, disingenuous; underhand; perverse; sinister.
- Not direct in descent; not following the line of father and son; collateral.
- (botany, of leaves) Having the base of the blade asymmetrical, with one side larger or extending further than the other.
- (geometry) An oblique line.
- The punctuation sign "/"
- (grammar) The oblique case.
(third-person singular simple present obliques, present participle obliquing, simple past and past participle obliqued)
- To deviate from a perpendicular line; to move in an oblique direction.
- (military) To march in a direction oblique to the line of the column or platoon; "” formerly accomplished by oblique steps, now by direct steps, the men half-facing either to the right or left.