1. regarded with favor, approval, or affection by people in general: a popular preacher.
  2. regarded with favor, approval, or affection by an acquaintance or acquaintances: He's not very popular with me just now.
  3. of, relating to, or representing the people, especially the common people: popular discontent.
  4. of the people as a whole, especially of all citizens of a nation or state qualified to participate in an election: popular suffrage; the popular vote; popular representation.
  5. prevailing among the people generally: a popular superstition.
  6. suited to or intended for the general masses of people: popular music.
  7. adapted to the ordinary intelligence or taste: popular lectures on science.
  8. suited to the means of ordinary people; not expensive: popular prices on all tickets.

Origin of popular

1375–1425; late Middle English populer < Latin populāris. See people, -ar1
Related formsan·ti·pop·u·lar, adjectivenon·pop·u·lar, adjectiveo·ver·pop·u·lar, adjectivepseu·do·pop·u·lar, adjectivequa·si-pop·u·lar, adjectivesem·i·pop·u·lar, adjectivesub·pop·u·lar, adjective
Can be confusedpoplar popular

Synonyms for popular

1. favorite, approved, liked. 5. common, current.

Synonym study

5. See general.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for over-popular

Historical Examples of over-popular

  • The Texas men were not over-popular in Arizona, and yet it was a sportsmanlike crowd.

  • "N-no, perhaps he was not over-popular with the colonel," he admitted slowly.

    The Red Seal

    Natalie Sumner Lincoln

  • For the over-popular Governor of a State Diaz provides distinguished employment elsewhere.

    The American Egypt

    Channing Arnold

  • The Sailors' Home as an institution is not over-popular with seamen, especially with the more improvident of them.

    A Tramp's Notebook

    Morley Roberts

British Dictionary definitions for over-popular


  1. appealing to the general public; widely favoured or admired
  2. favoured by an individual or limited groupI'm not very popular with her
  3. connected with, representing, or prevailing among the general public; commonpopular discontent
  4. appealing to or comprehensible to the laymana popular lecture on physics
  1. (usually plural) cheap newspapers with mass circulation; the popular pressAlso shortened to: pops
Derived Formspopularity (ˌpɒpjʊˈlærɪtɪ), noun

Word Origin for popular

C15: from Latin populāris belonging to the people, democratic, from populus people
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 over-popular



early 15c., "public," from Middle French populier (Modern French populaire) and directly from Latin popularis "belonging to the people, general, common; devoted to or accepted by the people; democratic," from populus "people" (see people (n.)).

Meaning "suited to ordinary people" is from 1570s in English; hence, of prices, "low, affordable to average persons" (1859). Meaning "well-liked, admired by the people" is attested from c.1600. Of art, entertainment, etc., "favored by people generally" from 1819 (popular song). Related: Popularly. Popular Front "coalition of Communists, Socialists, and radicals" is from 1936, first in a French context.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper