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  1. having analogy; corresponding in some particular: A brain and a computer are analogous.
  2. Biology. corresponding in function, but not evolved from corresponding organs, as the wings of a bee and those of a hummingbird.
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Origin of analogous

1640–50; < Latin analogus < Greek análogos proportionate, equivalent to ana- ana- + lóg(os) ratio + -os adj. suffix; see -ous
Related formsa·nal·o·gous·ly, adverba·nal·o·gous·ness, nounnon·a·nal·o·gous, adjectivenon·a·nal·o·gous·ly, adverbnon·a·nal·o·gous·ness, nounun·a·nal·o·gous, adjectiveun·a·nal·o·gous·ly, adverbun·a·nal·o·gous·ness, noun
Can be confusedanalogous analogical


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

Related Words


Examples from the Web for analogous

Historical Examples

  • Analogous facts may be cited closer to us, easier to verify.

    Introduction to the Science of Sociology

    Robert E. Park

  • Analogous grouping is preferable where variety of hue is desirable.

    Industrial Arts Design

    William H. Varnum

  • Analogous services were organized by the French and the Italians.


    Charles Fitzhugh Talman

  • Analogous observations on Triton by Jullien and Schreibers, 591.

  • Analogous to the medical mission are the missions to the blind and the deaf.

    Changing China

    William Gascoyne-Cecil

British Dictionary definitions for analogous


  1. similar or corresponding in some respect
  2. biology (of organs and parts) having the same function but different evolutionary originthe paddle of a whale and the fin of a fish are analogous Compare homologous (def. 4)
  3. linguistics formed by analogyan analogous plural
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Derived Formsanalogously, adverbanalogousness, noun

Word Origin

C17: from Latin analogus, from Greek analogos proportionate, from ana- + logos speech, ratio


The use of with after analogous should be avoided: swimming has no event that is analogous to (not with) the 100 metres in athletics
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 analogous


1640s, from Latin analogus, from Greek analogos "proportionate, according to due proportion" (see analogy).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

analogous in Medicine


  1. Similar in function but not in structure and evolutionary origin.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

analogous in Science


  1. Similar in function but having different evolutionary origins, as the wings of a butterfly and the wings of a bird.
  2. Similar in chemical properties and differing in chemical structure only with respect to one element or group.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.