lexicon

noun lex·i·con \ ˈlek-sə-ˌkän also -kən \

Definition of lexicon

plural lexica play \ˈlek-sə-kə\ or lexicons
1 :a book containing an alphabetical arrangement of the words in a language and their definitions :dictionary
  • a French lexicon
2 a :the vocabulary of a language, an individual speaker or group of speakers, or a subject
  • computer terms that have been added to the lexicon
b :the total stock of morphemes in a language
3 :repertoire, inventory
  • added the DVD to his video lexicon

Examples of lexicon in a Sentence

  1. a computer term that has entered the general lexicon

  2. an avid word enthusiast who is compiling a lexicon of archaic and unusual words

Recent Examples of lexicon from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lexicon.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Tips on Using lexicon in a Sentence

The word lexicon has a number of closely-related meanings, which can easily lead to confusion and may cause the word to be used in an awkward way. Lexicon can refer to a general dictionary of a language (as in "a lexicon of the Hebrew language") and also to a narrower printed compilation of words within some sphere (as in "a medical lexicon" or "a lexicon of the German in Finnegans Wake").

Similarly, lexicon can refer both to the vocabulary of a specific group of people ("the lexicon of French") or to the general language used by an unspecified group of people ("a word that has not entered the general lexicon yet"). It may also often be found in reference to the vocabulary employed by a particular speaker ("'Failure' is not a word in my lexicon").

Origin and Etymology of lexicon

Late Greek lexikon, from neuter of lexikos of words, from Greek lexis word, speech, from legein to say — more at legend

lexicon Synonyms

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms


LEXICON Defined for English Language Learners

lexicon

noun

Definition of lexicon for English Language Learners

  • : the words used in a language or by a person or group of people



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