1. Selecting or employing individual elements from a variety of sources, systems, or styles: an eclectic taste in music; an eclectic approach to managing the economy.
2. Made up of or combining elements from a variety of sources: "a popular bar patronized by an eclectic collection of artists, writers, secretaries and aging soldiers on reserve duty" (Curtis Wilkie).
One that follows an eclectic method.
[Greek eklektikos, selective, from eklektos, selected, from eklegein, to select : ek-, out; see ECTO- + legein, to gather; see leg- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.