Word of the Day

Tuesday, September 24, 2002


\for-TOO-uh-tuhs; -TYOO-\ , adjective;
Happening by chance; coming or occurring by accident, or without any known cause.
Happening by a fortunate or lucky chance.
Fortunate or lucky.
The profession, the political faith, the entire life of many men, depend on chance circumstances, on what is fortuitous, on the caprice and the unexpected turns of fate.
-- Juan Valera, Pepita Jimenez
They paint, in the most magnificent colours, the order, beauty, and wise arrangement of the universe; and then ask, if such a glorious display of intelligence could proceed from the fortuitous concourse of atoms, or if chance could produce what the greatest genius can never sufficiently admire.
-- David Hume, An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding
But Edward Bok has always felt that he was materially helped by fortuitous conditions not of his own creation or choice.
-- Edward Bok, The Americanization of Edward Bok
I was saved from arrest by the fortuitous arrival of some friends of my parents, who talked the cops into letting me go.
-- Susan Molinari with Elinor Burkett, Representative Mom
I view life as a fortuitous collaboration ascribable to the fact that one finds oneself in the right place at the right time.
-- Brion Gysin, The Third Mind
The site selection, three blocks west of the Chicago River, proved fortuitous in 1871, when everything east and north of the river burned down in the Great Chicago Fire.
-- Richard E. Cohen, Rostenkowski: The Pursuit of Power and the End of the Old Politics
Fortuitous comes from Latin fortuitus, "accidental," from fors, "chance, luck."
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