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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Etymological \Et`y*mo*log"ic*al\ (-m[-o]*l[o^]j"[i^]*kal), a. [L. etymologicus, Gr. 'etymologiko`s: cf. F. ['e]tymologique. See Etymology.] Pertaining to etymology, or the derivation of words. -- Et`y*mo*log"ic*al*ly, adv. [1913 Webster] ||

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1590s; see etymology + -ical. Related: Etymologically.


a. 1 (context not comparable English) Of or relating to etymology. 2 (context comparable of a word English) Consistent with its etymological characteristics (in historical usage and/or the source language).


adj. based on or belonging to etymology; "I merely drew an etymological distinction"


Usage examples of "etymological".

The names given to the earliest coins were something of an etymological rag-bag.

Americanism in the world and the search for its origins was the etymological equivalent of the search for DNA.

Genesis, juridical in Exodus, priestly in Leviticus, political in Numbers, etymological, diplomatical, and genealogical, but seldom historical, in Deuteronomy.

In particular, the etymological definitions of satire suggested by Diomedes are usefully metaphorical.

Great light however will accrue from examining this abuse, and observing the particular mode of error: and the only way of obtaining an insight must be by an etymological process, and by recurring to the primitive language of the people, concerning whom we are treating.

From hence the Reader will see plainly my method of analysis, and the basis of my etymological inquiries.

We must, therefore, in all etymological inquiries, have recourse to the Doric manner of pronunciation, to obtain the truth.

I shall be principally concerned, I took this opportunity at the same time to introduce these etymological inquiries.

Indeed, one of the consequences of this change, by which an etymological, dynastic notion of linguistic filiation was pushed aside by the view of language as a domain all of its own held together with jagged internal structures and coherences, is the dramatic subsidence of interest in the problem of the origins of language.

Thus, some of the best and furthest-descended English words--the etymological Howards and Percys--are now democratised, nay, plebeianised--so to speak-- in the New World.

We weren't the only crowd in Armstrong, but where age distribution peaks at around a hundred years and has a distinctive skew to it you just know you're in an etymological minority.

Crofts (who sent you, I believe, as well as myself, a copy of his treatise on the English and German languages, as preliminary to an Etymological dictionary he meditated) I went into explanations with him of an easy process for simplifying the study of the Anglo-Saxon, and lessening the terrors, and difficulties presented by it's rude Alphabet, and unformed orthography.

I know that such enquiries into etymologies have been much decried: but if, as is the case, words are the representative signs of ideas, the genealogy of the one becomes that of the other, and a good etymological dictionary would be the most perfect history of the human understanding.

He would have to look them up in the Harper Hall's etymological dictionary.

Iwas especially keen on comprehensive works that coveredall the knowledge on a particular subject, for example TheWorld of Art, The World of Music, The Human Body, FrancisBull's World Literary History, Bull, Paasche, Winsnes andHoem's The History of Norwegian Literature and Falk andTorp's Etymological Dictionary of the Norwegian and DanishTongues.