- the associated or secondary meaning of a word or expression in addition to its explicit or primary meaning: A possible connotation of “home” is “a place of warmth, comfort, and affection.”
- the act of connoting; the suggesting of an additional meaning for a word or expression, apart from its explicit meaning.
- something suggested or implied by a word or thing, rather than being explicitly named or described: “Religion” has always had a negative connotation for me.
- Logic. the set of attributes constituting the meaning of a term and thus determining the range of objects to which that term may be applied; comprehension; intension.
Origin of connotation
Synonyms for connotationSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Related Words for connotationmeaning, undertone, overtone, significance, coloring, nuance, hint, essence, suggestion, association
Examples from the Web for connotation
Contemporary Examples of connotation
Historical Examples of connotation
Why, I should say it means 'skilful, clever,' and it carries with it the connotation of 'novel.'Riders of the Silences
It has kept the connotation of "grace," but lost that of "nobility."A History of the French Novel, Vol. 1
The history of the title in this connotation is somewhat obscure.
Here there is no question of atmosphere, of suggestion, of connotation.Talks on Writing English
At any rate, if the etymology is false, the connotation is true.A Civil Servant in Burma
Herbert Thirkel White
- an association or idea suggested by a word or phrase; implication
- the act or fact of connoting
- logic another name for intension (def. 1)
1530s, from Medieval Latin connotationem (nominative connotatio), from connotat-, past participle stem of connotare "signify in addition to the main meaning," a term in logic, literally "to mark along with," from Latin com- "together" (see com-) + notare "to mark" (see note).
A word denotes its primary meaning, its barest adequate definition -- father denotes "one that has begotten." A word connotes the attributes commonly associated with it -- father connotes "male sex, prior existence, greater experience, affection, guidance."
The meaning that a word suggests or implies. A connotation includes the emotions or associations that surround a word. For example, the word modern strictly means “belonging to recent times,” but the word's connotations can include such notions as “new, up to date, experimental.”