Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The systematic and planned extermination of an entire national, racial, political, or ethnic group.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The systematic killing of substantial numbers of people on the basis of ethnicity, religion, political opinion, social status, or other particularity.
  • n. Acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or a significant portion of, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The systematic killing of a racial or cultural group.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. systematic killing of a racial or cultural group

Etymologies

Greek genos, race; see genə- in Indo-European roots + -cide.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Coined in 1943 by Raphael Lemkin (1900–1959), a Polish-Jewish legal scholar, to describe what the Turkish government (ca 1915–18) perpetrated against the Armenian people, now called the Armenian Genocide. From the stem of Ancient Greek γένος (génos, "race, kind") or Latin gēns ("tribe, clan") (as in genus), +‎ -cide (“killing, killer”). (Wiktionary)

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