et·​y·​mon ˈe-tə-ˌmän How to pronounce etymon (audio)
plural etyma ˈe-tə-mə How to pronounce etymon (audio) also etymons
: an earlier form of a word in the same language or an ancestral language
: a word in a foreign language that is the source of a particular loanword
: a word or morpheme from which words are formed by composition or derivation

Word History


Latin, from Greek, literal meaning of a word according to its origin, from etymos true; akin to Greek eteos true — more at sooth

First Known Use

1573, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of etymon was in 1573

Dictionary Entries Near etymon

Cite this Entry

“Etymon.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Dec. 2023.

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