emblem

noun
em·​blem | \ˈem-bləm \

Definition of emblem 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a picture with a motto or set of verses intended as a moral lesson

2 : an object or the figure of an object symbolizing and suggesting another object or an idea

3a : a symbolic object used as a heraldic device

b : a device, symbol, or figure adopted and used as an identifying mark

emblem

verb
emblemed; embleming; emblems

Definition of emblem (Entry 2 of 2)

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Synonyms for emblem

Synonyms: Noun

ensign, hallmark, impresa, logo, symbol, totem, trademark

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Choose the Right Synonym for emblem

Noun

emblem, symbol, and token mean a visible thing that stands for something that cannot be pictured. emblem is usually used of an object or a picture that stands for a group such as a family, an organization, or a nation. The eagle is one of our national emblems. symbol may be used of anything that is understood as a sign for something else. The lion is the symbol of courage. token is used of an object or act that shows the existence of something else. This gift is a token of our love.

Emblem Has Greek Roots

Noun

Both "emblem" and its synonym "symbol" trace back to the Greek verb ballein, meaning "to throw." "Emblem" arose from emballein, meaning "to insert," while "symbol" comes from "symballein," Greek for to throw together. "Ballein" is also an ancestor of the words "parable" (from "paraballein," "to compare"), "metabolism" (from "metaballein," "to change"), and "problem" (from "proballein," "to throw forward"). Another (somewhat surprising) "ballein" descendant is "devil," which comes from Greek diabolos, literally meaning "slanderer." "Diabolos" in turn comes from diaballein, meaning "to throw across" or "to slander."

Examples of emblem in a Sentence

Noun

The flag is the emblem of our nation. He has come to be regarded as an emblem of conservatism.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In pictures and in public the family appeared to be an emblem of warmth, love, and protection, but postmortem accounts of the Hart Tribe, as many called them, paint a very different picture. Glamour, "Broken Harts, Episode 1: Fear," 4 Dec. 2018 Arachnids have long been eight-legged emblems of the eerie holiday, but this year, supersized spider decorations are popping up even more on Pinterest, Instagram, and in stores. Taysha Murtaugh, Country Living, "Give Your Neighbors the Creeps With Oversized Spider Halloween Decor," 5 Oct. 2018 Wrinkly hippies with beads from ’67 still in their beards, nodding off to their Grateful Dead records with trays of VW emblems. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "Living Yard Sale to Yard Sale With My Mother, a Well Dressed Antique Dealer," 30 Aug. 2018 Sabrina's a wonderful emblem of the power of a free woman, of the liberation that comes from cutting ties to what no longer serves you. Gabriela Herstik, Glamour, "I'm a Modern Witch, and I Love Chilling Adventures of Sabrina So Much," 26 Oct. 2018 The most visible being a Fleur de Festival emblem which Barnhart DeHart designed and placed near the bottom of the poster. Kirby Adams, The Courier-Journal, "This poster beautifully represents the Kentucky Derby Festival. See it here," 26 Jan. 2018 Prosecutors say Fields was the driver of the vehicle and was photographed hours before the attack with a shield bearing the emblem of one of the hate groups taking part in the rally. Robert Strickley, Cincinnati.com, "NKY native James Alex Fields pleads not guilty in Charlottesville attack," 5 July 2018 Fields was photographed hours before the attack with a shield bearing the emblem of one of the hate groups taking part in the rally. CBS News, "Suspect pleads not guilty to federal hate crime charges for Charlottesville car attack," 5 July 2018 The state emblem of the Soviet Union made a punk rock cameo on a choker necklace. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "Decoding the Georgian and Russian Symbols at Vetements," 2 July 2018

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1584, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for emblem

Noun

Middle English, from Latin emblema inlaid work, from Greek emblēmat-, emblēma, from emballein to insert, from en- + ballein to throw — more at devil

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Statistics for emblem

Last Updated

10 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for emblem

The first known use of emblem was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for emblem

emblem

noun

English Language Learners Definition of emblem

: an object or picture used to suggest a thing that cannot be shown

: a person or thing that represents an idea

emblem

noun
em·​blem | \ˈem-bləm \

Kids Definition of emblem

: an object or an image used to suggest a thing that cannot be pictured The flag is the emblem of our nation.

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More from Merriam-Webster on emblem

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for emblem

Spanish Central: Translation of emblem

Nglish: Translation of emblem for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of emblem for Arabic Speakers

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