a. A separate part of a serialized work, such as a novel or television series.
b. A section of a classic Greek tragedy that occurs between two choric songs.
a. An incident or event that is part of a progression or a larger sequence: "one brief, if distressing, episode in a life rich in adventures, challenges, sorrows and joys" (Elizabeth Speller).
b. One of a series of events in the course of a narrative or drama. See Synonyms at occurrence.
3. Music A passage between statements of a main subject or theme, as in a rondo or fugue.
[French épisode, from Greek epeisodion, parenthetic narrative, from neuter of epeisodios, coming in besides : epi-, epi- + eisodios, entering (eis, into; see en in the Appendix of Indo-European roots + hodos, way, journey).]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. 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.