AskDefine | Define onomastic

Dictionary Definition

onomastic adj : of or related to onomastics; "he published a collection of his onomastic essays"

User Contributed Dictionary



From ὀνομάζω (I name) + -ic


  • italbrac RP /ˌɒ.nəʊˈmæs.tɪk/
  • italbrac US /ˌɑː.noʊˈmæs.tɪk/ or /ˌɑː.nəˈmæs.tɪk/
  • Rhymes with: -æstɪk


  1. of, or relating to a personal or place name
  2. of, or relating to onomastics

Related terms

Extensive Definition

Onomastics or onomatology is the study of proper names of all kinds and the origins of names. The word is Greek: ὀνοματολογία (from ὄνομα (ónoma) "name"). Toponymy or toponomastics, the study of place names, is one of the principal branches of onomastics. Anthroponomastics is the study of personal names.
For some cultures (and celebrities), only one name is needed to indicate a certain person without ambiguity. In others, a single personal name may be insufficient, requiring alteration to a hypocoristic/diminutive nickname or addition of a byname based on a specific individual's traits, family, home, occupation, or other. In most of the world, individually-based bynames have become hereditary family names, perhaps retaining little descriptive resemblance to the ancestral namesake's original byname.
Most Western European cultures use the name order indicated by the common synonymous phrases "first name" for personal name and "last name" or "surname" for family name. However, this differs from traditional East Asian and Hungarian usages, which place the family name before the personal name.

See also

onomastic in Belarusian: Анамастыка
onomastic in Breton: Anvadurezh
onomastic in Bulgarian: Ономастика
onomastic in Catalan: Onomàstica
onomastic in Czech: Onomastika
onomastic in German: Namenforschung
onomastic in Estonian: Onomastika
onomastic in Spanish: Onomástica
onomastic in Basque: Onomastika
onomastic in French: Onomastique
onomastic in Galician: Onomástica
onomastic in Croatian: Onomastika
onomastic in Indonesian: Onomastik
onomastic in Italian: Onomastica
onomastic in Latvian: Onomastika
onomastic in Lithuanian: Onomastika
onomastic in Hungarian: Névtan
onomastic in Dutch: Onomastiek
onomastic in Norwegian: Onomastikk
onomastic in Occitan (post 1500): Onomastica
onomastic in Polish: Onomastyka
onomastic in Portuguese: Onomástica
onomastic in Romanian: Onomastica
onomastic in Russian: Ономастика
onomastic in Saterfriesisch: Noomenkunde
onomastic in Slovak: Onomastika
onomastic in Slovenian: Onomastika
onomastic in Swedish: Onomastik
onomastic in Turkish: Onomastik
onomastic in Ukrainian: Ономастика
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