- A person who travels from place to place.
- (Peripatetic) An Aristotelian philosopher.
- Traveling from place to place, in particular working or based in various places for relatively short periods.
- (Peripatetic) Aristotelian. [With reference to Aristotle’s practice of walking to and fro while teaching.]
“It’s a peripatetic way of life, but I can’t imagine staying anywhere longer than a year.”
“My mother accused me of being a peripatetic, because I want to live in at least five countries before I turn 40.”
“He claimed his research was based on Socrates, but he seems more Peripatetic to me.”
Latin, early 16th century
Why this word?
If you’ve ever been described as someone who “thinks well on your feet,” you might be Peripatetic (with a capital “P”). Aristotle was known for conducting his lectures while pacing back and forth, and the Greek word “peripatētikos” (meaning “walking up and down”) became attached to both Aristotelian philosophy and the practice of traveling from place to place (lowercase “peripatetic”).