1. From another part of the world; foreign: exotic tropical plants in a greenhouse.
2. Intriguingly unusual or different; excitingly strange: “If something can be explained simply, in a familiar way, then it is best to avoid more exotic explanations” (Chet Raymo).
3. Of or involving striptease: an exotic dancer.
1. A plant or animal that is exotic.
2. A striptease performer.
[Latin exōticus, from Greek exōtikos, from exō, outside; see EXO–.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 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.