fra·​ter·​nal | \ frə-ˈtər-nᵊl How to pronounce fraternal (audio) \

Definition of fraternal

1a : of, relating to, or involving brothers fraternal love
b : of, relating to, or being a fraternity or society a fraternal order a fraternal chapter house
2 : derived from two ova : dizygotic fraternal twins
3 : friendly, brotherly There was a fraternal feeling among the troops.

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Other Words from fraternal

fraternalism \ frə-​ˈtər-​nə-​ˌliz-​əm How to pronounce fraternalism (audio) \ noun
fraternally \ frə-​ˈtər-​nᵊl-​ē How to pronounce fraternally (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for fraternal



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Examples of fraternal in a Sentence

He belonged to a fraternal organization. There was a fraternal feeling among the troops.

Recent Examples on the Web

Most Americans knew the Olsens, who are fraternal twins, for playing tot Michelle Tanner on the ABC sitcom Full House from 1987 to 1995 and for their later Mary-Kate and Ashley videos. Christina Binkley, WSJ, "Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen’s The Row Launches Menswear," 27 Aug. 2018 Born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, the fraternal twins attended boarding school in England and have called London home for the past few years. Harper's BAZAAR, "Crazy Rich Couture," 15 Aug. 2018 Vincent, a fraternal triplet, is set to go home early next week, Barton said. Janelle Walker,, "'One-in-a-million': Suburban woman had son, then twins — and now has given birth to triplets," 30 Mar. 2018 Technically, this made the babies fraternal triplets fertilized by one sperm cell. Sarah Schreiber, Good Housekeeping, "A Woman "Miraculously" Became Pregnant While She Was Already Expecting," 14 Nov. 2016 The Shriners are a national fraternal organization that dates back to 1870 New York. Maria L. La Ganga, idahostatesman, "What’s behind ’60s-era paneling at El Korah Shrine? A ballroom’s worth of ’20s art.," 12 July 2018 There are fraternal organizations and sororities involved. Paul Sisson,, "Celebrating life at Euclid and Imperial, once known as Four Corners of Death," 8 July 2018 Rough Animals follows two fraternal twins on a remote Utah farm, bound together by a dark secret., "How Rae DelBianco Went From Cattle Farmer To Bookstagram Queen To Literary Darling — All By 25," 13 July 2018 For the Georges, that distinction came in the form of fraternal twins, Malik and Miles, who are now heading to their dream school together: Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Christopher Brito, CBS News, "New Jersey fraternal twins named co-valedictorians, set to head to MIT together," 24 June 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for fraternal

Middle English, from Medieval Latin fraternalis, from Latin fraternus, from frater brother — more at brother

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

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English Language Learners Definition of fraternal

: of or relating to brothers
: made up of members who share an interest or purpose
: friendly or brotherly


fra·​ter·​nal | \ frə-ˈtər-nᵊl How to pronounce fraternal (audio) \

Kids Definition of fraternal

1 : having to do with brothers fraternal affection
2 : made up of members banded together like brothers a fraternal organization


fra·​ter·​nal | \ frə-ˈtərn-ᵊl How to pronounce fraternal (audio) \

Medical Definition of fraternal

: derived from two ova : dizygotic fraternal twins

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Comments on fraternal

What made you want to look up fraternal? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


of or relating to a parable or parabola

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