familiar stresses the fact of being generally known and easily recognized.
a familiar melody
popular applies to what is accepted by or prevalent among people in general sometimes in contrast to upper classes or special groups.
a writer of popular romances
vulgar, otherwise similar to popular, is likely to carry derogatory connotations (as of inferiority or coarseness).
souvenirs designed to appeal to the vulgar taste
Examples of common in a Sentence
They have a common ancestor.
The people on the island have a sense of common identity.
It is common practice for one town's fire department to help another town when there is a big fire.
Electric windows are a common feature in new cars.
“Smith” is a common name.
I think some of the most common flowers are also some of the prettiest.
cures for the common coldNoun
The campus has several dining commons. See More
Recent Examples on the Web
This hard-nosed objectivity had a recent demonstration in the joint decision to redeem $140 million worth of preferred shares in troubled Salomon Inc. rather than convert them into common shares.—Matt Schifrin, Forbes, 29 Nov. 2023 There are three types of skin cancer: basal cell carcinoma (which is the most common), squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma (the most dangerous).—Beth Sobol, Allure, 29 Nov. 2023 The study found that cannabis use was very common among those who were dependent on heroin.—Dr. Khushali Jhaveri, ABC News, 29 Nov. 2023 From that specimen, researchers confirmed the existence of the mysterious creatures, which are at least twice as large as a common rat.—Sarah Kuta, Smithsonian Magazine, 29 Nov. 2023 The creators of LLMs have put rules in place to stop common prompt injections from working, but there are no easy fixes.—Matt Burgess, WIRED, 29 Nov. 2023 The most common issues include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and constipation, though more serious side effects such as pancreatitis, gastroparesis, and bowel obstruction have been reported.10
What Is 'Food Noise'?—Julia Landwehr, Health, 28 Nov. 2023 With a ravenous market to satisfy, huge payouts for exclusive interview deals have become common.—Corey Kilgannon, New York Times, 28 Nov. 2023 Gatherings of people in their thirties are common at American Girl Cafés.—Lizzie Feidelson, The New Yorker, 17 Nov. 2023
Leah was more attuned to the hallmarks of movement-building: an upcoming singles’ night, a pancake breakfast, infant care—amenities that were increasingly rare in the public commons.—Andrew Marantz, The New Yorker, 7 Aug. 2023 In some places, water managers actively refill groundwater to ameliorate this tragedy of the commons.—Erica Gies, Scientific American, 25 Oct. 2023 Then an executive named Sheryl Sturges had an inspiration: since the atmosphere was a global commons, why not situate the forest elsewhere?—Heidi Blake, The New Yorker, 16 Oct. 2023 The nine learning studios are off to the sides of the commons.—Richard Requena, Chicago Tribune, 11 Sep. 2023 Command of the commons is what makes the United States a true global military power.—Stephen G. Brooks, Foreign Affairs, 18 Apr. 2023 In the early days of the internet, there was a movement to create a digital commons by making knowledge and culture free, open and accessible through alternatives to a copyright model.—Christopher Soto, Los Angeles Times, 23 Aug. 2023 Unlike the waters up to 200 nautical miles from a country's coastline, the rest of the ocean is considered to be a global commons belonging to everyone and no one at the same time.—Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY, 6 Aug. 2023 The general area of the town center project is just northeast of the Pearl Road-Westwood Drive intersection and includes the Strongsville branch of the Cuyahoga County Public Library, the site of Castletown Playground and the city commons at Pearl and Ohio 82.—Bob Sandrick, cleveland, 25 July 2023 See More
These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'common.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.
Adjective and Noun
Middle English commun, from Anglo-French, from Latin communis — more at mean