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[sood-n-im] /ˈsud n ɪm/
a fictitious name used by an author to conceal his or her identity; pen name.
Compare allonym (def 1).
Origin of pseudonym
1840-50; < Greek pseudṓnymon false name; see pseud-, -onym
alias, nom de plume. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for pseudonym
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Possibly the same honor, under my pseudonym, may have been intended for me.

    The Room in the Dragon Volant J. Sheridan LeFanu
  • Compare "pseudonym," where the prefix is contracted, and "nonentity."


    Paul Allardyce
  • This was published in 1638, under the pseudonym of Domingo Gonsales.

    Moon Lore Timothy Harley
  • He prefers, as his pseudonym implies, to remain an unknown quantity.

    From Jungle to Java Arthur Keyser
  • It is he who figures in our story under the pseudonym of de Laville.

    The Indian Chief Gustave Aimard
British Dictionary definitions for pseudonym


a fictitious name adopted, esp by an author
Derived Forms
pseudonymity, noun
Word Origin
C19: via French from Greek pseudōnumon
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
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Word Origin and History for pseudonym

1828, in part a back-formation from pseudonymous, in part from German pseudonym and French pseudonyme (adj.), from Greek pseudonymos "having a false name, under a false name," from pseudes "false" (see pseudo-) + onyma, Aeolic dialectal variant of onoma "name" (see name (n.)).

"Possibly a dictionary word" at first [Barnhart]. Fowler calls it "a queer out-of-the-way term for an everyday thing." Properly in reference to made-up names; the name of an actual author or person of reputation affixed to a work he or she did not write is an allonym. An author's actual name affixed to his or her own work is an autonym (1867).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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