Os"cil*late(s"sl*lt), v. i. [imp. & p. p. Oscillated (s"sl*l`td); p. pr. & vb. n. Oscillating (s"sl*l`tng).] [L. oscillare to swing, fr. oscillum a swing, a little mask or puppet made to be hung from trees and swing in the wind, prob. orig., a little mouth, a dim. from os mouth. See Oral, and cf. Osculate.]
1. To move backward and forward; to vibrate like a pendulum; to swing; to sway.
2. To vary or fluctuate between fixed limits; to act or move in a fickle or fluctuating manner; to change repeatedly, back and forth.
The amount of superior families oscillates rather than changes, that is, it fluctuates within fixed limits.De Quincey.
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Fri 14th December 2018