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verb (used with object), con·not·ed, con·not·ing.
  1. to signify or suggest (certain meanings, ideas, etc.) in addition to the explicit or primary meaning: The word “fireplace” often connotes hospitality, warm comfort, etc.
  2. to involve as a condition or accompaniment: Injury connotes pain.
verb (used without object), con·not·ed, con·not·ing.
  1. to have significance only by association, as with another word: Adjectives can only connote, nouns can denote.

Origin of connote

1645–55; < Medieval Latin connotāre, equivalent to Latin con- con- + notāre to note
Can be confusedconnote denote


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1. intimate, imply.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for connote

Historical Examples

  • To mention an industry is almost always to connote some one of the six.

    England and Germany

    Emile Joseph Dillon

  • Rather these words should connote the strong, the self-reliant, the youthful.

    Journeys to Bagdad

    Charles S. Brooks

  • But this does not connote the absence of love and respect for the master.

  • It may connote, however, some of the most essential virtues that a race can possess.

  • The sense of possession which they connote was gone from his heart.

British Dictionary definitions for connote


verb (tr; often takes a clause as object)
  1. (of a word, phrase, etc) to imply or suggest (associations or ideas) other than the literal meaningthe word "maiden" connotes modesty
  2. to involve as a consequence or condition

Word Origin

C17: from Medieval Latin connotāre, from notāre to mark, make a note, from nota mark, sign, note
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for connote


1660s, from Medieval Latin connotare "to mark along with," (see connotation). A common word in medieval logic. Related: Connoted; connoting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper