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[verb kuh-myoon; noun kom-yoon]
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verb (used without object), com·muned, com·mun·ing.
  1. to converse or talk together, usually with profound intensity, intimacy, etc.; interchange thoughts or feelings.
  2. to be in intimate communication or rapport: to commune with nature.
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  1. interchange of ideas or sentiments.
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Origin of commune1

1250–1300; Middle English com(m)unen < Middle French comuner to share, derivative of comun common
Related formscom·mun·er, noun


verb (used without object), com·muned, com·mun·ing.
  1. to partake of the Eucharist.
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Origin of commune2

1275–1325; Middle English; back formation from communion


  1. a small group of persons living together, sharing possessions, work, income, etc., and often pursuing unconventional lifestyles.
  2. a close-knit community of people who share common interests.
  3. the smallest administrative division in France, Italy, Switzerland, etc., governed by a mayor assisted by a municipal council.
  4. a similar division in some other country.
  5. any community organized for the protection and promotion of local interests, and subordinate to the state.
  6. the government or citizens of a commune.
  7. people's commune.
  8. the Commune. Also called Commune of Paris, Paris Commune.
    1. a revolutionary committee that took the place of the municipality of Paris in the revolution of 1789, usurped the authority of the state, and was suppressed by the National Convention in 1794.
    2. a socialistic government of Paris from March 18 to May 27, 1871.
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Origin of commune3

1785–95; < French < Medieval Latin commūna (feminine), alteration of Latin commūne community, state, orig. neuter of commūnis common
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for commune


verb (kəˈmjuːn) (intr usually foll by with)
  1. to talk or converse intimately
  2. to experience strong emotion or spiritual feelings (for)to commune with nature
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noun (ˈkɒmjuːn)
  1. intimate conversation; exchange of thoughts; communion
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Word Origin

C13: from Old French comuner to hold in common, from comun common


  1. (intr) Christianity, mainly US to partake of Communion
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Word Origin

C16: back formation from communion


  1. a group of families or individuals living together and sharing possessions and responsibilities
  2. any small group of people having common interests or responsibilities
  3. the smallest administrative unit in Belgium, France, Italy, and Switzerland, governed by a mayor and council
  4. the government or inhabitants of a commune
  5. a medieval town enjoying a large degree of autonomy
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Word Origin

C18: from French, from Medieval Latin commūnia, from Latin: things held in common, from commūnis common


noun French history
  1. See Paris Commune
  2. a committee that governed Paris during the French Revolution and played a leading role in the Reign of Terror: suppressed 1794
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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 commune


c.1300, "have dealings with," from Old French comuner "to make common, share" (10c., Modern French communier), from comun (see common (adj.)). Meaning "to talk intimately" is late 14c. Related: Communed; communing.

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1792, from French commune "small territorial divisions set up after the Revolution," from Middle French commune "free city, group of citizens" (12c.), from Medieval Latin communia, noun use of neuter plural of Latin adjective communis, literally "that which is common," from communis (see common (adj.)). The Commune of Paris usurped the government during the Reign of Terror. The word later was applied to a government on communalistic principles set up in Paris in 1871. Adherents of the 1871 government were Communards.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper