Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Of or relating to the assignment of names.
  • adjective Grammar Of or relating to a common noun.
  • noun A name or descriptive epithet.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Having the character of an appellation; serving to name or mark out; serving as a distinctive denomination; denominative: as, hydrochloric is a term appellative of a certain acid.
  • In grammar, common, as applied to a noun; general; denominative of a class: opposed to proper.
  • noun In grammar, a common name in distinction from a proper name; a name standing for a whole class: thus, the word man is the appellative of the whole human race, fowl of all winged animals, tree of all plants of a particular class, etc.
  • noun Title; appellation; nickname.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A common name, in distinction from a proper name. A common name, or appellative, stands for a whole class, genus, or species of beings, or for universal ideas. Thus, tree is the name of all plants of a particular class; plant and vegetable are names of things that grow out of the earth. A proper name, on the other hand, stands for a single thing; as, Rome, Washington, Lake Erie.
  • noun An appellation or title; a descriptive name.
  • adjective Pertaining to a common name; serving as a distinctive denomination; denominative; naming.
  • adjective (Gram.) Common, as opposed to proper; denominative of a class.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective grammar Of or pertaining to a common noun.
  • adjective Of or pertaining to ascribing names.
  • noun A common noun.
  • noun An epithet.

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

  • adjective pertaining to or dealing with or used as a common noun
  • noun identifying word or words by which someone or something is called and classified or distinguished from others
  • adjective inclined to or serving for the giving of names

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, common (noun), from Old French appelatif, from Late Latin appelātīvus, from Latin appellātus, past participle of appellāre, to call upon, entreat; see appeal.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Late Latin appellativus, from the stem appella- "to call", with the adjectival suffix -ive.

Examples

  • Terms that have both are called appellative terms and should be distinguished from substance terms or natural kind terms, which have signification by imposition.

    Mental Representation in Medieval Philosophy

  • In older writings the term Arab is used only as an appellative, meaning "desert," or "people of the desert," or

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 1: Aachen-Assize

  • In these cases we have what Jakobson calls the conative function, what other linguists refer to as the appellative, imperative or directive function.

    Archive 2008-09-01

  • As such, Hamburger is equal parts myth debunker and modernization theorizer; Pizza traces transatlantic classism, corporate global­ization, and methodology-as-variety; and Pancake offers an iterative look at comfort food, cultural controversy, and appellative breadth.

    Cover to Cover

  • As such, Hamburger is equal parts myth debunker and modernization theorizer; Pizza traces transatlantic classism, corporate global­ization, and methodology-as-variety; and Pancake offers an iterative look at comfort food, cultural controversy, and appellative breadth.

    Cover to Cover

  • In these cases we have what Jakobson calls the conative function, what other linguists refer to as the appellative, imperative or directive function.

    Notes on Strange Fiction: Narrative's Function (2)

  • Being side by side with homebrew frames will certain be very appellative to corporations after a young audience who is shifting TV for YouTube.

    A TV Ad for just $39?

  • “Ay, or in the case of a man having made the country too hot for him under his own proper appellative,” said Mr. Touchwood.

    Saint Ronan's Well

  • “I am coming, — I am coming,” said the person who answered to that appellative; and then reiterating hastily,

    The Heart of Mid-Lothian

  • As an appellative or a pejorative, it is a term that was used quite widely; in fact, we can trace the term back almost a thousand years before the time of Moses.

    The Common Origin of and Split Between Arabs and Jews - An Interview with Professor George E. Mendenhall

Comments

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  • adj., designating by name a thing of which more than one exists; related to the giving of names.

    n., a common (as opposed to proper) noun; appellation.

    July 13, 2008