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

  • adj. Originating and living or occurring naturally in an area or environment. See Synonyms at native.
  • adj. Intrinsic; innate.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Native; produced, growing, or living, naturally in a country or climate; not exotic; not imported.
  • adj. Native; inherent; innate.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Born or originating in a particular place or country; produced naturally in a country or climate; native; not exotic.
  • Figuratively, innate; inherent; intrinsic.
  • Synonyms Native, etc. See original, a.
  • In geology, noting a rock or a mineral which has originated as such in the place where it is found, such as granite or basalt in situ. A glacial boulder brought from a distance is exotic or erratic.
  • In physiography, noting a stream which developed originally in its present surroundings: it is a consequent one in most cases.

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

  • adj. originating where it is found


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

From Latin indigena, a native; see indigen.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Late Latin indigenus ("native, born in a country"), from indi- (indu-), an old derivative of in ("in"), gen- the root of gignō ("give birth to"), and English -ous. Compare indigene and ancient Greek ἐνδογενής (endogenēs), "endogenous".


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  • I use the term indigenous with care, as "indigenous" includes Muslims going back many generations.

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  • That's why U.S. national security adviser Tom Donilon, in talking with journalists late last week, used the term "indigenous" four times to describe dissidents in Libya and elsewhere in the region.

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  • Since independence the term indigenous, widely used in an affirmative action campaign, has applied almost exclusively to blacks and left out whites and other minorities born in the southern African nation - some the descendants of several generations of settlers.

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  • He said paragraph 27 of the draft declaration of the conference which declared that the use of the term indigenous peoples "cannot be construed as having any implications to rights" would undermine the rights of minorities if it was accepted.

    ANC Daily News Briefing

  • We use the term indigenous to describe locally developed knowledge, practices, and resources including crop varieties and gardens.

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  • We use the term indigenous to describe the people whose ancestors were the earliest settlers here after the last great Ice Age and which have been complemented by the historic migrations from mainland Europe.

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  • Responding to China's position that there are no indigenous people in China, Prof. Anaya stated that while he understands the "sensitivities" that many States have on the issue on the coverage of the term indigenous peoples.

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  • Whether or not it would keep the name "Nets," which has served it for decades on Long Island and in New Jersey, or adopt a new label indigenous to Brooklyn, has always been less important than whether it would identify itself as a "Brooklyn" or as a "New York" franchise.

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  • ZAHN: And, Joe, this is actually a prediction you made many months ago on a show right here on CNN, what you called indigenous resistance.

    CNN Transcript Aug 19, 2003


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  • The vast a complex nature of the soul is indigenous to the depths of humanity

    May 21, 2008