Definitions

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

  • noun A word or name derived from a proper noun. The words atlas, bowdlerize, denim, and Turing machine are eponyms.
  • noun One whose name is or is thought to be the source of the name of something.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A name of a place, people, or period derived from that of a person.
  • noun A name of a mythical or historical personage from whom the name of a country or people has come or is supposed to have come: thus, Italus, Romulus, Brutus, Heber, the names of imaginary persons invented to account for Italy, Rome, Britain, Hebrew, are mythical eponyms; Bolivar is the historical eponym of Bolivia.
  • noun A name of something, as a part or organ of the body, derived from a person: thus, circle of Willis, fissure of Sylvius, aqueduct of Fallopius, are eponyms.
  • noun The archon eponymus at Athens (see archon); also, one of certain Assyrian functionaries who gave their names to the years during which they held office.

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

  • noun The hypothetical individual who is assumed as the person from whom any race, city, etc., took its name.
  • noun A name, as of a people, country, and the like, derived from that of an individual.

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

  • noun The name of a real or fictitious person whose name has, or is thought to have, given rise to the name of a particular item.
  • noun A word formed from a real or fictive person’s name.

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

  • noun the name derived from a person (real or imaginary)
  • noun the person for whom something is named

Etymologies

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

[French éponyme, from Greek epōnumos, named after : epi-, epi- + onoma, onuma, name; see nŏ̄-men- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Ancient Greek ἐπώνυμος (epōnumos), from ἐπί (epi, "upon") + ὄνυμα (onuma), Aeolic variant of ὄνομα (onoma, "name"). See -onym.

Examples

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