Dictionary.com

aphorism

[ af-uh-riz-uhm ]
/ ˈæf əˌrɪz əm /
Save This Word!
See synonyms for: aphorism / aphorisms on Thesaurus.com

noun
a terse saying embodying a general truth, or astute observation, as “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely” (Lord Acton).
QUIZ
ARE YOU A TRUE BLUE CHAMPION OF THESE "BLUE" SYNONYMS?
We could talk until we're blue in the face about this quiz on words for the color "blue," but we think you should take the quiz and find out if you're a whiz at these colorful terms.
Question 1 of 8
Which of the following words describes “sky blue”?
Meet Grammar CoachWrite or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar helpImprove Your Writing
Meet Grammar CoachImprove Your Writing
Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar help

Origin of aphorism

1520–30; French aphorisme<Late Latin aphorismus<Greek aphorismós definition, equivalent to aphor(ízein) to define (see aphorize) + -ismos-ism

OTHER WORDS FROM aphorism

aph·o·ris·mic, aph·o·ris·mat·ic [af-uh-riz-mat-ik], /ˌæf ə rɪzˈmæt ɪk/, adjective

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH aphorism

adage, aphorism , apothegm, axiom, maxim, proverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

How to use aphorism in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for aphorism

aphorism
/ (ˈæfəˌrɪzəm) /

noun
a short pithy saying expressing a general truth; maxim

Derived forms of aphorism

aphorist, noun

Word Origin for aphorism

C16: from Late Latin aphorismus, from Greek aphorismos definition, from aphorizein to define, set limits to, from horos boundary
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

Cultural definitions for aphorism

aphorism
[ (af-uh-riz-uhm) ]

A concise and often witty statement of wisdom or opinion, such as “Children should be seen and not heard,” or “People who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.”

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
FEEDBACK