anon·​y·​mous | \ ə-ˈnä-nə-məs How to pronounce anonymous (audio) \

Definition of anonymous

1 : of unknown authorship or origin an anonymous tip
2 : not named or identified an anonymous author They wish to remain anonymous.
3 : lacking individuality, distinction, or recognizability the anonymous faces in the crowd … the gray anonymous streets …— William Styron

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Other Words from anonymous

anonymousness noun

Examples of anonymous in a Sentence

The donor wishes to remain anonymous. An anonymous buyer purchased the painting. The college received an anonymous gift. He made an anonymous phone call to the police. The reporter got an anonymous tip. His was just another anonymous face in the crowd.
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Recent Examples on the Web That included an anonymous tip line and a public pay scale. Nicole Goodkind, Fortune, "Bernie Sanders wants the future of the far left to be female. Is that enough?," 30 Jan. 2020 Children’s Wisconsin has received a pledge of $15 million, the largest gift in its history, from an anonymous donor to help fund its five-year plan to improve access to behavioral health care for children and adolescents. Guy Boulton, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Children's Wisconsin receives $15 million pledge to improve behavioral health care programs," 27 Jan. 2020 Anyone with information can contact detectives at 330-430-3800 or the anonymous crime tip line at 330-451-3937. Cliff Pinckard, cleveland, "Vehicle hits, kills 29-year-old woman in Stark County," 24 Jan. 2020 North Dakota Fargo: An anonymous donor gave Fargo Public Schools more than $28,000 to pay the lunch debt of all students for the first semester of classes. USA TODAY, "Bounty of bags, parrot false alarm, virtual hike: News from around our 50 states," 6 Jan. 2020 Sarah D’Angelo was lying in a bed at University Hospital, having just undergone surgery to receive a new liver from an anonymous donor, when her friend walked through the door. Lauren Caruba,, "She wanted to give part of her liver to a friend. Instead, she donated it to a stranger.," 23 Dec. 2019 Meanwhile, in nearby Oxford, Alabama, an anonymous donor also paid off the remaining $25,000 in layaway balances at a different Walmart, the Anniston Star reported. Rachel Desantis,, "‘Secret Santa’ Pays Off $45K in Layaway Balances at Alabama Walmart: ‘I’m Extremely Blessed’," 13 Dec. 2019 At a Walmart store in Midland, Michigan, an anonymous donor also paid off $3,000 worth of layaway accounts this week. Amanda Jackson, CNN, "NFL star Khalil Mack pays off 300 holiday layaway accounts at a Walmart in his hometown," 8 Dec. 2019 Philanthropist Roman Abramovich later added $5 million, and an anonymous donor committed an additional $5 million. Michele Chabin,, "Competition provides $1 million in grants to combat BDS and Israel delegitimization," 25 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'anonymous.' 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 anonymous

1563, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for anonymous

Late Latin anonymus, from Greek anōnymos, from a- + onyma name — more at name

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Time Traveler for anonymous

Time Traveler

The first known use of anonymous was in 1563

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Statistics for anonymous

Last Updated

12 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Anonymous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for anonymous


How to pronounce anonymous (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of anonymous

: not named or identified
: made or done by someone unknown
: not distinct or noticeable : lacking interesting or unusual characteristics


anon·​y·​mous | \ ə-ˈnä-nə-məs How to pronounce anonymous (audio) \

Kids Definition of anonymous

1 : not named or identified an anonymous caller
2 : made or done by someone unknown an anonymous phone call

Other Words from anonymous

anonymously adverb A large sum has been anonymously donated.

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Comments on anonymous

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