neologism

noun
ne·​ol·​o·​gism | \ nē-ˈä-lə-ˌji-zəm How to pronounce neologism (audio) \

Definition of neologism

1 : a new word, usage, or expression technological neologisms
2 psychology : a new word that is coined especially by a person affected with schizophrenia and is meaningless except to the coiner, and is typically a combination of two existing words or a shortening or distortion of an existing word

Other Words from neologism

neologistic \ nē-​ˌä-​lə-​ˈji-​stik How to pronounce neologism (audio) \ adjective

Did you know?

The English language is constantly picking up neologisms. In recent decades, for example, computer technology has added a number of new terms to the language. Webinar, malware, netroots, and blogosphere are just a few examples of modern-day neologisms that have been integrated into American English. The word neologism was itself a brand-new coinage in the latter half of the 18th century, when English speakers borrowed the French term néologisme. The word's roots are quite old, ultimately tracing back to ancient Greek neos, meaning "new," and logos, meaning "word."

Examples of neologism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The neologism also offered a useful means of describing and studying how the impacts of climate change reach beyond tangible, physical, and economic damages. Madeline Ostrander, The Atlantic, 23 July 2022 In the neologism contest of Week 1491, the Empress asked the Loser Community to choose any word, name or phrase beginning A through E, then add a letter — or the same letter more than once — and define the result. Pat Myers, Washington Post, 30 June 2022 This week’s contest — to transpose two letters in a word or phrase — has often been an option in our change-a-letter neologism contests over the years. Washington Post, 21 Apr. 2022 Shunkaryougen — a Japanese four-kanji neologism coined by Haru herself — will be released digitally and as a 12-inch vinyl. Billboard Japan, Billboard, 15 Feb. 2022 The key is that there are 24 different permutations of the letters, and even ones like DBIE can work because the neologism could be a multi-word phrase as well as a single word, and the block can stretch over a space. Washington Post, 13 Jan. 2022 Omnishambles is a neologism first used in the BBC political satire The Thick of Itin 2009. Andrew Stuttaford, National Review, 30 Oct. 2021 The segment also feels dated, strangled by the unimaginative neologism of the fraught summer that preceded it. The New Yorker, 9 Aug. 2021 The segment also feels dated, strangled by the unimaginative neologism of the fraught summer that preceded it. The New Yorker, 9 Aug. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of neologism

1772, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for neologism

borrowed from French néologisme "the habit of forming new words, a newly formed word," from néologie "coining of new words" (from néo- neo- + -logie -logy) + -isme -ism

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The first known use of neologism was in 1772

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Dictionary Entries Near neologism

neological

neologism

neologist

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Last Updated

31 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Neologism.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/neologism. Accessed 25 Sep. 2022.

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More Definitions for neologism

neologism

noun
ne·​ol·​o·​gism | \ nē-ˈäl-ə-ˌjiz-əm How to pronounce neologism (audio) \

Medical Definition of neologism

: a new word that is coined especially by a person affected with schizophrenia, is meaningless except to the coiner, and is typically a combination of two existing words or a shortening or distortion of an existing word

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