Definition of Idiom

1. Noun. A manner of speaking that is natural to native speakers of a language.

Exact synonyms: Parlance
Generic synonyms: Expression, Formulation
Derivative terms: Idiomatic, Idiomatical

2. Noun. The usage or vocabulary that is characteristic of a specific group of people. "It has been said that a language is a dialect with an army and navy"
Exact synonyms: Accent, Dialect
Generic synonyms: Non-standard Speech
Specialized synonyms: Eye Dialect, Patois
Examples of language type: Bang, Spang, Euphonious, Forrad, Forrard, Forward, Forwards, Frontward, Frontwards
Derivative terms: Accentuate, Dialectal

3. Noun. The style of a particular artist or school or movement. "An imaginative orchestral idiom"

4. Noun. An expression whose meanings cannot be inferred from the meanings of the words that make it up.
Exact synonyms: Idiomatic Expression, Phrasal Idiom, Phrase, Set Phrase
Generic synonyms: Expression, Locution, Saying
Specialized synonyms: Ruralism, Rusticism
Examples of language type: Out Of Whack, In The Lurch, Like Clockwork
Derivative terms: Idiomatic, Phrasal, Phrase

Definition of Idiom

1. n. The syntactical or structural form peculiar to any language; the genius or cast of a language.

Definition of Idiom

1. Noun. (rare) A manner of speaking, a way of expressing oneself. ¹

2. Noun. A language or dialect. ¹

3. Noun. Specifically, a particular variety of language; a restricted dialect used in a given historical period, context etc. ¹

4. Noun. An artistic style (for example, in art, architecture, or music); an instance of such a style. ¹

5. Noun. An expression peculiar to or characteristic of a particular language, especially when the meaning is illogical or separate from the meanings of its component words. ¹

6. Noun. (programming) A programming construct or phraseology generally held to be the most efficient, elegant or effective means to achieve a particular result or behavior. ¹

¹ Source:

Definition of Idiom

1. an expression peculiar to a language [n -S]

Medical Definition of Idiom

1. 1. The syntactical or structural form peculiar to any language; the genius or cast of a language. "Idiom may be employed loosely and figuratively as a synonym of language or dialect, but in its proper sense it signifies the totality of the general rules of construction which characterise the syntax of a particular language and distinguish it from other tongues." (G. P. Marsh) "By idiom is meant the use of words which is peculiar to a particular language." (J. H. Newman) "He followed their language [the Latin], but did not comply with the idiom of ours." (Dryden) 2. An expression conforming or appropriate to the peculiar structural form of a language; in extend use, an expression sanctioned by usage, having a sense peculiar to itself and not agreeing with the logical sense of its structural form; also, the phrase forms peculiar to a particular author. "Some that with care true eloquence shall teach, And to just idioms fix our doubtful speech." (Prior) "Sometimes we identify the words with the object though be courtesy of idiom rather than in strict propriety of language." (Coleridge) "Every good writer has much idiom." (Landor) "It is not by means of rules that such idioms as the following are made current: "I can make nothing of it." "He treats his subject home." Dryden. "It is that within us that makes for righteousness." M.Arnold." (Gostwick (Eng. Gram)) 3. Dialect; a variant form of a language. Synonym: Dialect. Idiom, Dialect. The idioms of a language belong to its very structure; its dialects are varieties of expression ingrafted upon it in different localities or by different professions. Each county of England has some peculiarities of dialect, and so have most of the professions, while the great idioms of the language are everywhere the same. See Language. Origin: F. Idiome, L. Idioma, fr. Gr, fr. To make a person's own, to make proper or peculiar; prob. Akin to the reflexive pronoun, and to, one's own, L. Suus, and to E. So. Source: Websters Dictionary (01 Mar 1998)

Idiom Pictures

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Lexicographical Neighbors of Idiom

idiojunctional rhythm
idiom (current term)
idiom blend
idiomatic expression

Literary usage of Idiom

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. The Journal of Philology by William George Clark, John Eyton Bickersteth Mayor, William Aldis Wright, Ingram Bywater, Henry Jackson (1899)
"Is it that an idiom which is not Attic cannot be Homeric, and therefore KaL vv ... What has long troubled me is the occurrence of this idiom twice with the ..."

2. The Infinitive in Anglo-Saxon by Morgan Callaway (1913)
"The predicative infinitive with findan is not due to Latin influence, for in the translations it corresponds to another idiom of the original (a predicative ..."

3. A German Grammar for Schools and Colleges: Based on the Public School German by Albert L. Meissner, Edward Southey Joynes (1890)
"This idiom is comprehended in an immense body of usages, often lying beyond the range of analysis or explanation — often seemingly capricious— sometimes ..."

4. American Journal of Education by Barnard (1882)
"In Latin and Greek a boy may be unable to analyze an irregular idiom for want ... But the much more common idiom with " of," as in " one, two, three, four, ..."

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