Simple Definition of germane
: relating to a subject in an appropriate way
Examples of germane in a sentence
The press material for this film contains some notes made by the Dardenne brothers during the shooting. Such material is usually disposable, but these notes are germane.. —Stanley Kauffmann, New Republic, 3 Feb. 2003
From time to time, engineers and scientists hold conferences … where they trot out ideas they have developed, frequently ideas germane to solving practical problems. —Jane Jacobs, Cities and the Wealth of Nations,(1984) 1985
Bork and his supporters argued that his “academic” writings and his speeches were not germane to whether he should be confirmed. —Elizabeth Drew, New Yorker, 2 Nov. 1987
facts germane to the dispute
<my personal opinion isn't germane to our discussion of the facts of the case>
Did You Know?
Wert thou a Leopard, thou wert Germane to the Lion. So wrote Shakespeare in Timon of Athens (circa 1607), using an old (and now obsolete) sense of germane meaning "closely akin." Germane derives from the Latin word germen, meaning "bud" or "sprout," which is also at the root of our verb germinate, meaning "to sprout" or "begin to develop." An early sense of germane referred specifically to children of the same parents, who were perhaps seen as being like buds on a single tree.
Origin of germane
Middle English germain, literally, having the same parents, from Anglo-French
First Known Use: 14th century
Synonym Discussion of germane
Seen and Heard
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