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distract

[dih-strakt] /dɪˈstrækt/
verb (used with object)
1.
to draw away or divert, as the mind or attention:
The music distracted him from his work.
2.
to disturb or trouble greatly in mind; beset:
Grief distracted him.
3.
to provide a pleasant diversion for; amuse; entertain:
I'm bored with bridge, but golf still distracts me.
4.
to separate or divide by dissension or strife.
adjective
5.
Obsolete, distracted.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin distractus (past participle of distrahere to draw apart), equivalent to dis- dis-1 + trac- (variant stem of trahere to draw) + -tus past participle suffix
Related forms
distractible, adjective
distractingly, adverb
nondistracting, adjective
nondistractingly, adverb
undistracting, adjective
undistractingly, adverb
Synonyms
2. bewilder, agitate, pain, torment, distress.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for distractible
  • He's intensely awake to the world but perpetually distractible.
  • As the pressure for performance increases, so does the need to help distractible children concentrate on the task at hand.
  • She had trouble remembering what she'd read and she was irritable and distractible.
  • But the pilot, who had seemed weak and distractible during their flight, became rigid with concentration and determination.
  • Those afflicted with the disorder are hyperactive, distractible and impulsive.
  • The individual is jittery and strained, distractible and apprehensive that something bad is about to happen.
  • Dolores is excited about school, though highly distractible.
  • Ten-month-olds were more distractible than older children, even during focused attention.
British Dictionary definitions for distractible

distract

/dɪˈstrækt/
verb (transitive)
1.
(often passive) to draw the attention of (a person) away from something
2.
to divide or confuse the attention of (a person)
3.
to amuse or entertain
4.
to trouble greatly
5.
to make mad
Derived Forms
distracter, noun
distractible, adjective
distractibility, noun
distracting, adjective
distractingly, adverb
distractive, adjective
distractively, adverb
Word Origin
C14: from Latin distractus perplexed, from distrahere to pull in different directions, from dis-1 + trahere to drag
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for distractible
distract
mid-14c., "to draw asunder or apart" (literal and figurative), from L. distractus, pp. of distrahere "draw in different directions," from dis- "away" + trahere "to draw" (see tract (1)). Sense of "to throw into a state of mind in which one knows not how to act" is from 1580s. Related: Distracted; distracting.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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