noun (used with a singular verb)

the science of language, including phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, and historical linguistics.

Origin of linguistics

First recorded in 1850–55; see origin at linguistic, -ics Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for linguistics

Contemporary Examples of linguistics

Historical Examples of linguistics

  • All such efforts are inconsistent with correct methods in linguistics.

  • Had not a "universal religion" better let linguistics alone?

    Bahaism and Its Claims

    Samuel Graham Wilson

  • A further proof of the antiquity of the migrations is afforded by linguistics.

    Man, Past and Present

    Agustus Henry Keane

  • Its scope was not restricted to the study of meteors, for it accepted papers on ethnology, linguistics, etc.

    The Jesuits, 1534-1921

    Thomas J. Campbell

  • The labors of the two brothers, too numerous to cite here, concerned also ethnography and linguistics.

British Dictionary definitions for linguistics



(functioning as singular) the scientific study of languageSee also historical linguistics, descriptive linguistics
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 linguistics

"the science of languages," 1847; see linguistic; also see -ics.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper