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anonym

[ an-uh-nim ]
/ ˈæn ə nɪm /
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noun

an assumed or false name.
an anonymous person or publication.

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Origin of anonym

1805–15; <French anonyme<Greek anṓnymosanonymous
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

VOCAB BUILDER

What is an anonym?

An anonym is a false or fictitious name, especially one used by a person so they can remain anonymous.

The word anonym is rarely used. A much more common synonym of anonym is pseudonym. (That’s a lot of –nyms—more about that in the next section.)

Anonyms can be used for a number of reasons. In legal proceedings, the anonyms John Doe, Jane Doe, Richard Roe, and Jane Roe are used in cases when a person’s name is unknown or is being kept anonymous. They are also sometimes used in medicine for a patient whose name is not known.

There are many reasons an author may choose to use an anonym instead of their own name, such as to avoid controversy or to create a persona. When an author uses an anonym, it is more often called a pen name, a nom de plume, or a pseudonym.

The word anonym can also refer to an anonymous person or an anonymous publication.

Example: A lot of people use anonyms when posting controversial opinions online.

Where does anonym come from?

The first records of the word anonym come from the early 1800s. The prefix an- means “without,” and -onym means “name” in Greek (it can also mean “word,” and is used in words like synonym and acronym). The adjective anonymous is recorded much earlier and is much more commonly used than anonym. The noun anonymity (meaning “the state of being anonymous”) is also more commonly used, but the first records of its use come from the around the same time as anonym.

The pseudo in pseudonym means “false” or “unreal,” and anonyms are also, by definition, false—they’re fictitious, made-up names that take the place of someone’s real name. The word anonym typically implies that such a name is being used so that the user can remain totally anonymous—unidentifiable. A pseudonym can be used for the same purpose, but the word pseudonym is also often used in cases in which people want to create a separation between themselves and their work without necessarily remaining completely anonymous.

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What are some synonyms for anonym?

What are some words that share a root or word element with anonym

 

What are some words that often get used in discussing anonym?

 

How is anonym used in real life?

Anonyms can be used for all kinds of reasons, but the word itself isn’t very common. It’s much more common to use the word pseudonym.

 

 

Try using anonym!

Which of the following terms is NOT a synonym of anonym

A. pseudonym
B. alias
C. antonym
D. false name

Example sentences from the Web for anonym

British Dictionary definitions for anonym

anonym
/ (ˈænənɪm) /

noun

a less common word for pseudonym
an anonymous person or publication
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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