[loh-kuh l]



verb (used without object)

Informal. to travel by or take a local train or the like.

Origin of local

First recorded in 1400–50; late Middle English word from Late Latin word locālis. See locus, -al1
Related formslo·cal·ness, nounin·ter·lo·cal, adjectivein·ter·lo·cal·ly, adverbnon·lo·cal, adjective, nounnon·lo·cal·ly, adverbsu·per·lo·cal, adjectivesu·per·lo·cal·ly, adverbun·lo·cal, adjectiveun·lo·cal·ly, adverb
Can be confusedlocal locale locality location


[loh-kal, -kal]


Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for local

Contemporary Examples of local

Historical Examples of local

  • He took a cab and was driven to the local branch of his favourite temple of chance.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • He rented a car at a local garage, and drove himself out into the country.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • The local preacher knelt on the platform, and offered up a prayer.

  • I know it is said that this means the classification of local preachers.

    Samantha Among the Brethren, Part 7.

    Josiah Allen's Wife (Marietta Holley)

  • True child of Alsace, he revelled in local folklore and legend.

    In the Heart of Vosges

    Matilda Betham-Edwards

British Dictionary definitions for local



characteristic of or associated with a particular locality or area
of, concerned with, or relating to a particular place or point in space
med of, affecting, or confined to a limited area or partCompare general (def. 10), systemic (def. 2)
(of a train, bus, etc) stopping at all stations or stops


a train, bus, etc, that stops at all stations or stops
an inhabitant of a specified locality
British informal a pub close to one's home or place of work
med short for local anaesthetic
US and Canadian an item of local interest in a newspaper
US and Canadian a local or regional branch of an association
Canadian a telephone extension
Derived Formslocalness, noun

Word Origin for local

C15: via Old French from Late Latin locālis, from Latin locus place, locus
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 local

"pertaining to position," late 14c. (originally medical, "confined to a particular part of the body"), from Old French local (13c.) and directly from Late Latin localis "pertaining to a place," from Latin locus "place" (see locus). The meaning "limited to a particular place" is from c.1500. Local color is from 1721, originally a term in painting; meaning "anything picturesque" is from c.1900.


early 15c., "a medicament applied to a particular part of the body," from local (adj.). Meaning "inhabitant of a particular locality" is from 1825. The meaning "a local train" is from 1879; "local branch of a trade union" is from 1888; "neighborhood pub" is from 1934.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

local in Medicine




Affecting or confined to a specific part of the body; not general or systemic.


Local anesthesia.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.