follow Dictionary.com

Denotation vs. Connotation

incidental

[in-si-den-tl] /ˌɪn sɪˈdɛn tl/
adjective
1.
happening or likely to happen in an unplanned or subordinate conjunction with something else.
2.
incurred casually and in addition to the regular or main amount:
incidental expenses.
3.
likely to happen or naturally appertaining (usually followed by to).
noun
4.
something incidental, as a circumstance.
5.
incidentals, minor expenses.
Origin of incidental
1610-1620
1610-20; incident + -al1
Related forms
incidentalness, noun
nonincidental, adjective
nonincidentally, adverb
unincidental, adjective
unincidentally, adverb
Can be confused
incidence, incidents, incidental.
Synonyms
1. casual, chance, fortuitous; contingent.
Antonyms
1. fundamental.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for incidental
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Leopold did all of these things but they were incidental to his larger task.

    An African Adventure Isaac F. Marcosson
  • The club and Bobby were incidental points of contact, pleasant, but not permanent.

    The Dominant Strain Anna Chapin Ray
  • Stolen, although I believe the theft was incidental to something else.

    The Man in Lower Ten Mary Roberts Rinehart
  • The production of gold is only incidental, as it were, while the output of silver might be doubled.

    Aztec Land Maturin M. Ballou
  • And there had been other, incidental triumphs by the team of four.

    Space Tug Murray Leinster
British Dictionary definitions for incidental

incidental

/ˌɪnsɪˈdɛntəl/
adjective
1.
happening in connection with or resulting from something more important; casual or fortuitous
2.
(postpositive) foll by to. found in connection (with); related (to)
3.
(postpositive) foll by upon. caused (by)
4.
occasional or minor: incidental expenses
noun
5.
(often pl) an incidental or minor expense, event, or action
Derived Forms
incidentalness, noun
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for incidental
adj.

"casual, occasional," 1610s, from Medieval Latin incidentalis, from incidens (see incident (n.)). Incidentals (n.) "'occasional' expenses, etc.," is attested by 1707.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for incidental

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for incidental

13
17
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for incidental