vernacular


1ver·nac·u·lar

adjective \və(r)-ˈna-kyə-lər\

: of, relating to, or using the language of ordinary speech rather than formal writing

: of or relating to the common style of a particular time, place, or group

Full Definition of VERNACULAR

1
a :  using a language or dialect native to a region or country rather than a literary, cultured, or foreign language
b :  of, relating to, or being a nonstandard language or dialect of a place, region, or country
c :  of, relating to, or being the normal spoken form of a language
2
:  applied to a plant or animal in the common native speech as distinguished from the Latin nomenclature of scientific classification <the vernacular name>
3
:  of, relating to, or characteristic of a period, place, or group; especially :  of, relating to, or being the common building style of a period or place <vernacular architecture>
ver·nac·u·lar·ly adverb

Examples of VERNACULAR

  1. the vernacular architecture of the region
  2. <writes essays in a very easy-to-read, vernacular style>
  3. While there are American operas galore, some of which are quite good indeed, there is no vernacular opera tradition in America—instead, we have musical comedy—and now that supertitles have become standard equipment at major American opera houses, the chances that those houses will start regularly performing foreign-language operas in English translation have dropped from slim to none. —Terry Teachout, New York Times Book Review, 9 Nov. 1997

Origin of VERNACULAR

Latin vernaculus native, from verna slave born in the master's house, native
First Known Use: 1601

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms

ablaut, allusion, anacoluthon, diacritic, gerund, idiom, infinitive, metaphor, semiotics, simile

Rhymes with VERNACULAR

2ver·nac·u·lar

noun \və(r)-ˈna-kyə-lər\

: the language of ordinary speech rather than formal writing

Full Definition of VERNACULAR

1
:  a vernacular language, expression, or mode of expression :  an expression or mode of expression that occurs in ordinary speech rather than formal writing
2
:  the mode of expression of a group or class
3
:  a common name of a plant or animal as distinguished from the Latin nomenclature of scientific classification :  a vernacular name of a plant or animal

Examples of VERNACULAR

  1. He spoke in the vernacular of an urban teenager.
  2. phrases that occur in the common vernacular
  3. But ask baseball people about [Michael] Young, and they'll admiringly tell you that he is a grinder, vernacular for a player who works his butt off. —Chris Ballard, Sports Illustrated, 8 May 2006

Origin of VERNACULAR

(see 1vernacular)
First Known Use: 1661

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms

ablaut, allusion, anacoluthon, diacritic, gerund, idiom, infinitive, metaphor, semiotics, simile

Rhymes with VERNACULAR

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