Also found in: Thesaurus, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to cunctator: Fabius Maximus Cunctator


Procrastination; delay.

[Latin cūnctātiō, cūnctātiōn-, from cūnctātus, past participle of cūnctārī, to delay; see konk- in Indo-European roots.]

cunc′ta′tive (kŭngk′tā′tĭv, -tə-tĭv) adj.
cunc′ta′tor n.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.cunctator - someone who postpones work (especially out of laziness or habitual carelessness)
delayer - a person who delays; to put off until later or cause to be late
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in classic literature ?
Believe me in war the energy of young men often shows the way better than all the experience of old Cunctators."
Lukasz Neubauer categorizes and explicates some examples of Tolkien's philological jests relating to place names (toponyms) and character names (anthroponyms and zoonyms) in "Plain Ignorance in the Vulgar Form: Tolkien's Onomastic Humour in Farmer Giles of Ham." "Pseudo-classical reframing" finds humor in the contrast of faux-formal names with down-to-earth characters like Aegidius Ahenobarbus Julius Agricola de Hammo; "Replication of reality" similarly uses such names to comment on character, as in the name of the blacksmith, Fabricius Cunctator, with its implications of delay and falsification.
Quintus Fabius Maximus (nicknamed "Cunctator," or "Lingerer") saved Rome from Hannibal's invasion because he protracted the campaign, avoiding decisive engagements with Hannibal's army.
Fabius Maximus Cunctator and the Claudii, who advocated remaining in Rome.
During the second Punic war the famous general Quintus Fabius Maximus became known as Quintus Fabius Cunctator (the Delayer) as he avoided contact with the enemy until he judged that circumstances were totally in his favour.