1 occurring or performed quickly and without warning
2 marked by haste; abrupt
3 Rare rash; precipitate
4 Archaic an abrupt occurrence or the occasion of such an occurrence (in the phrase on a sudden)
all of a sudden without warning; unexpectedly
6 Chiefly poetic without warning; suddenly
(C13: via French from Late Latin subitaneus, from Latin subitus unexpected, from subire to happen unexpectedly, from sub- secretly + ire to go)
English Collins Dictionary - English Definition & Thesaurus
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"Collins English Dictionary 5th Edition first published in 2000 © HarperCollins Publishers 1979, 1986, 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000 and Collins A-Z Thesaurus 1st edition first published in 1995 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995"