Definition of emoji
: any of various small images, symbols, or icons used in text fields in electronic communication (as in text messages, e-mail, and social media) to express the emotional attitude of the writer, convey information succinctly, communicate a message playfully without using words, etc. The function of emoji, as [emoji developer Shigetaka] Kurita describes it—adding subtle emotional emphasis to a sentence in text—isn't too different from that of emoticons, the frowny and smiley faces that people have been making out of punctuation since the mid-1990s. — Britt Peterson — compare emoticon
Origin and Etymology of emoji
borrowed from Japanese, literally, “pictograph,” from e “picture, drawing” + moji “letter, character”
First Known Use: 1997
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up emoji? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).