(Latin: swing, vibrate, move, motion; from oscillum, a diminutive form of osoris, "mouth, face, small face")
By extension, "small mask of the god Bacchus" that was hung in Roman vineyards to honor the god of wine while scaring off grape-eating birds as it vibrated and swang in the breeze.
Many oscilla or masks, representing the head of Bacchus or of different rustic deities, are still preserved. There is a marble oscillum of Bacchus in the British Museum. Others still in existence are made of earthenware, but it seems probable that wax and wood were the ordinary materials. Small rudely shaped figures of wool, known as pilae, were also hung up in the same way as the oscilla.
2. To alternate between two states, opinions, principles, purposes, etc.; to vary or fluctuate alternately between two limits: Brain activity oscillates at different frequencies depending on what people are doing, how high their stress levels are, and other factors; such as, the amount of sleep, nourishment, and stimulation people have.
3. To be indecisive in purpose or opinion; to vacillate: Yesterday, Hank seemed certain about buying a new pair of shoes, but today he is oscillating because he's not sure whether he should wait until next week or not.
4. Etymology: from Latin oscillat-, "swung, from the verb oscillare.
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2. Of an electric current: undergoing very rapid periodic reversal of direction.
3. In astronomy, a model of the universe in which expansion is followed by contraction, explosion, and expansion once more, in an infinite cycle.
2. Vacillation, fluctuation, or wavering between two states, opinions, principles, purposes, etc.
3. Variation consisting of alternate increase and decrease without convergence to a limit or divergence.
2. Tending to oscillate; vibratory.
2. Something that moves to and fro; a system or device that oscillates.
3. An apparatus for generating oscillatory electric currents, or for generating electromagnetic waves by means of such currents. Also, a device for generating sound waves.
2. Moving, or characterised by motion, backward and forward like a pendulum; swinging; oscillating; vibratory; as, oscillatory motion.
Electrocardiographs and electroencephalographs are examples of the application of this technique.2. An instrument that registers the movements of an electric current and photographically records the variation.
3. A device for recording oscillations: especially, those of an electric current.
2. The use of oscillographs.