First attested in 1870; coined by Thomas Huxley. Either from Ancient Greek ἄγνωστος (ágnōstos, “ignorant, not knowing”) or from a- + Gnostic. Deriving (either way) from Ancient Greek ἀ- (a-, “not”) + γιγνώσκω (gignṓskō, “I know”).
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /æɡˈnɒstɪk/
- (US) IPA(key): /æɡˈnɑːstɪk/
Audio (US) (file)
- Rhymes: -ɒstɪk
- Of or relating to agnosticism or its adherents.
1889, Huxley, Thomas Henry, Agnosticism:
- In matters of the intellect do not pretend that conclusions are certain which are not demonstrated or demonstrable. That I take to be the agnostic faith, which if a man keep whole and undefiled, he shall not be ashamed to look the universe in the face, whatever the future may have in store for him.
His agnostic viewpoint is summarized in his book.
- Doubtful or uncertain about the existence or demonstrability of God or other deity.
She left the church when she became agnostic.
- (computing) Of a software component etc.: unaware or noncommittal regarding the specific nature of the components with which it interacts; polymorphic; modular; pluggable
The socket communications layer is agnostic with regard to its underlying transport mechanism -- it is “transport-agnostic”.
- (usually with a prepositional phrase) Having no firmly held opinions on an issue or matter of uncertainty.
I'm agnostic on whether ethanol is a green fuel.
He says he's agnostic concerning the Secretary's claims.
- view agnostic (computing)
agnostic (plural agnostics)
- sceptic (Mainly UK & Commonwealth), skeptic (Mainly US)
- Appendix:Glossary of philosophical isms