• synonyms


adjective Informal.
  1. of, relating to, or designating a person, group, or organization of mixed origin or identity: an Irish-American club and other hyphenated organizations.
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Origin of hyphenated

First recorded in 1890–95; hyphenate + -ed2
Related formsun·hy·phen·at·ed, adjective


[verb hahy-fuh-neyt; adjective, noun hahy-fuh-nit, -neyt]
verb (used with object), hy·phen·at·ed, hy·phen·at·ing.
  1. to join by a hyphen.
  2. to write or divide with a hyphen.
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  1. of or relating to something of distinct form or origin that has been joined; connected by a hyphen.
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  1. Informal. a person working or excelling in more than one craft or occupation: He's a film-industry hyphenate, usually listed as a writer-director-producer.
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Origin of hyphenate

First recorded in 1850–55; hyphen + -ate1
Related formshy·phen·a·tion, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for hyphenated

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Inconsistencies in hyphenated words have been made consistent.

  • The Bear Garden is not hyphenated when used in titles but is hyphenated within the text.

    Lotus Buds

    Amy Carmichael

  • The following words are found in hyphenated and unhyphenated forms in the text.

  • A word should never be divided or hyphenated in lettering, when it can be avoided.

    A Book for All Readers

    Ainsworth Rand Spofford

  • Inconsistencies with regards to hyphenated words have been left as in the original.

    Health on the Farm

    H. F. Harris

British Dictionary definitions for hyphenated


  1. containing or linked with a hyphen
  2. mainly US having a nationality denoted by a hyphenated word, as in American-Irish
  3. mainly US denoting something, such as a professional career, that consists of two elements, as in singer-songwriter
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  1. (tr) to separate (syllables, words, etc) with a hyphen
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Derived Formshyphenation, noun
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 hyphenated



1881, from hyphen + -ate (2). The earlier verb was simply hyphen (1814). Related: Hyphenated; hyphenating. Hyphenated American is attested from 1889.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper