Open main menu

Wiktionary β




From Latin consistens, present participle of cōnsistō (to agree with; to continue), from con- (prefix indicating a being or bringing together of several objects) (ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *ḱóm (beside, by, near, with)) + sistō (to cause to stand; to place, set) (ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *stísteh₂ti (to be standing up; to be getting up), from the root *steh₂- (to stand (up))).



consistent (comparative more consistent, superlative most consistent)

  1. Of a regularly occurring, dependable nature. [from late 16th c. in the obsolete sense ‘consisting of’]
    The consistent use of Chinglish in China can be very annoying, apart from some initial amusement.
    He is very consistent in his political choices: economy good or bad, he always votes Labour!
  2. Compatible, accordant.
  3. (logic) Of a set of statements: such that no contradiction logically follows from them.
    • 1857, William Spalding, “Introduction”, in An Introduction to Logical Science: Being a Reprint of the Article “Logic” from the Eighth Edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica, Edinburgh: Adam and Charles Black, chapter II (The Function and Axioms of Logical Science), paragraph 12(2), pages 22–23:
      When we ask whether ideas or terms are consistent or inconsistent with each other, the question really is, in what manner the relation presupposed between the ideas qualifies them for being combined as terms of a judgment.
    • 2008, Charles Petzold, “Centuries of Progress”, in The Annotated Turing: A Guided Tour through Alan Turing’s Historic Paper on Computability and the Turing Machine, Indianapolis, Ind.: Wiley Publishing, →ISBN, page 39:
      Part of establishing a foundation for geometry was demonstrating that the axioms were consistent – that they could never lead to contradictions.


Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit



consistent (plural consistents)

  1. (in the plural, rare) Objects or facts that are coexistent, or in agreement with one another.
    • 1661, Galileo Galilei; Thomas Salusbury, transl., “Galilæus: Galilæus Lincæus, His Systeme of the World. The Second Dialogue.”, in Mathematical Collections and Translations, volume I, part I, London: William Leybourne, OCLC 863523362, pages 234–235:
      The Diurnal motion of the primum mobile, is it not from Eaſt to Weſt? And the annual motion of the Sun through the Ecliptick, is it not on the contrary from Weſt to Eaſt? How then can you make theſe motions being conferred on the Earth, of contraries to become conſiſtents?
  2. (Eastern Orthodoxy, historical) A kind of penitent who was allowed to assist at prayers, but was not permitted to receive the holy sacraments.
    • [1884, William E[dward] Addis; Thomas Arnold, “PENITENTIAL DISCIPLINE AND BOOKS”, in A Catholic Dictionary: Containing Some Account of the Doctrine, Discipline, Rites, Ceremonies, Councils, and Religious Orders of the Catholic Church, London: Kegan Paul, Trench, & Co., 1 Paternoster Square, OCLC 64590647, page 651:
      [F]rom the fourth century onwards, the Eastern Church divided penitents into four classes. [] The consistentes (the last class—συστάντες, consistentes) "stand together with the faithful, and do not go out with the catechumens. Last comes participation in the sacraments (ἁγιασμάτων)."]



Further readingEdit




consistent (masculine and feminine plural consistents)

  1. consistent

Derived termsEdit