al·​pha·​bet·​ic | \ ˌal-fə-ˈbe-tik How to pronounce alphabetic (audio) \
variants: or alphabetical \ ˌal-​fə-​ˈbe-​ti-​kəl How to pronounce alphabetic (audio) \

Definition of alphabetic

1 usually alphabetical : arranged in the order of the letters of the alphabet
2 : of, relating to, or employing an alphabet

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Other Words from alphabetic

alphabetically \ ˌal-​fə-​ˈbe-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce alphabetic (audio) \ adverb

Examples of alphabetic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web As Lydia Wilson wrote for Smithsonian magazine earlier this year, the evolution of alphabetic writing advanced after the late Bronze Age collapse, around 1200 B.C. Livia Gershon, Smithsonian Magazine, "Pottery Shard May Be ‘Missing Link’ in the Alphabet’s Development," 16 Apr. 2021 Here is an alphabetic look at a handful of them, competition that in some cases will likely carry over to fall camp. Tom Layberger, Forbes, "Quarterback Battles At Ohio State, Texas Among Those To Watch This Spring," 9 Mar. 2021 The first introduction of the Greek lettering system fascinated many in 2005, which had never been used since the international, rotating alphabetic name system began in 1953. Joe Mario Pedersen,, "Hurricane Facts: With Greek letters going away, how long were they around?," 29 Mar. 2021 Some seem to follow an alphabetic theme—Zocavia, Zocania, Zonkim—while others are pure etymological puzzles: Biacolum, Qansi, NYZNIA. Peter Hessler, The New Yorker, "The Rise of Made-in-China Diplomacy," 8 Mar. 2021 Our vocal tract, with its singular configuration of tubes, evolved to expel an alphabetic array of speech sounds at an astonishing rate. Sabrina Sholts, Smithsonian Magazine, "Why This Pandemic Won’t Be the Last," 5 Mar. 2021 This season is only the second time that all alphabetic names have been used up—the last time was in 2005. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, "Out of Names, National Hurricane Center Calls New Storms by Greek Letters," 18 Sep. 2020 Unfortunately for the Renaissance linguist, between the fifth and first centuries B.C. hieroglyphs were superseded by Persian, Greek and Latin, the alphabetic languages of Egypt’s successive foreign occupants. Maxwell Carter, WSJ, "‘The Riddle of the Rosetta’ Review: Found in Translation," 17 Sep. 2020 For some deaf-blind patients, tracing alphabetic letters on palms with a finger may be an option. Los Angeles Times, "Coronavirus poses added challenges for deaf and hard of hearing hospital patients," 16 Apr. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'alphabetic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of alphabetic

1543, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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Time Traveler for alphabetic

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The first known use of alphabetic was in 1543

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Last Updated

2 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Alphabetic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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Britannica English: Translation of alphabetic for Arabic Speakers

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