gentile

[ jen-tahyl ]
/ ˈdʒɛn taɪl /

adjective (sometimes initial capital letter)

noun

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Mississippi’s nickname comes from the magnificent trees that grow there. What is it?

Origin of gentile

1350–1400; Middle English <Latin gentīlis, equivalent to gent-, stem of gēnsgens + -īlis-ile

OTHER WORDS FROM gentile

non·gen·tile, adjective, nounpro-Gentile, adjective, nounun·gen·tile, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

British Dictionary definitions for gentile (1 of 3)

gentile
/ (ˈdʒɛntaɪl) /

adjective

denoting an adjective or proper noun used to designate a place or the inhabitants of a place, as Spanish and Spaniard
of or relating to a tribe or people

Word Origin for gentile

C14: from Late Latin gentīlis, from Latin: one belonging to the same tribe or family; see gens

British Dictionary definitions for gentile (2 of 3)

Gentile1
/ (ˈdʒɛntaɪl) /

noun

adjective

British Dictionary definitions for gentile (3 of 3)

Gentile2
/ (Italian dʒenˈtiːle) /

noun

Giovanni (dʒoˈvanni). 1875–1944, Italian Idealist philosopher and Fascist politician: minister of education (1922–24)
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 gentile

Gentile

Someone who is not a Jew (see also Jews). “The nations” is the common expression in the Old Testament for non-Jews as a group, and a Gentile is a person belonging to “the nations.”

notes for Gentile

Both the Old Testament and the New Testament tell of numerous conflicts between Jews and Gentiles. Figuratively, a “gentile” is any nonbeliever.
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.