• synonyms


See more synonyms for eponym on Thesaurus.com
  1. a person, real or imaginary, from whom something, as a tribe, nation, or place, takes or is said to take its name: Brut, the supposed grandson of Aeneas, is the eponym of the Britons.
  2. a word based on or derived from a person's name.
  3. any ancient official whose name was used to designate his year of office.
Show More

Origin of eponym

First recorded in 1840–50; back formation from eponymous
Related formsep·o·nym·ic, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for eponym

term, brand, style, label, flag, signature, sign, nickname, surname, head, tag, rubric, moniker, cognomen, agnomen, pseudonym, appellation, handle, epithet, denomination

Examples from the Web for eponym

Historical Examples of eponym

  • This, however, as we learn from the Eponym Canon, was not all.

    The Expositor's Bible

    F. W. Farrar

  • The word 'Abram' is merely an eponym—it means 'exalted father.'

  • As much is suggested by the following entry in an eponym list.

  • And in this respect Herakles was the eponym and patron of an order which existed throughout Doric Hellas.

  • Sardanapalus, the eponym of Oriental luxury, furnishes a good subject for this style of composition.

British Dictionary definitions for eponym


  1. a name, esp a place name, derived from the name of a real or mythical person, as for example Constantinople from Constantine I
  2. the name of the person from which such a name is derivedin the Middle Ages, "Brutus" was thought to be the eponym of "Britain"
Show More
Derived Formseponymic, adjective

Word Origin for eponym

C19: from Greek epōnumos giving a significant name
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 eponym


one whose name becomes that of a place, a people, an era, an institution, etc., 1846, from Greek eponymos "given as a name, giving one's name to something," from epi "upon" (see epi-) + onyma, Aeolic dialectal variant of onoma "name" (see name (n.)).

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

eponym in Medicine


  1. A name of a drug, structure, or disease based on or derived from the name of a person.
Show More
Related formsep′o•nymic adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.