definitions
  • synonyms

pseudonym

[ sood-n-im ]
/ ˈsud n ɪm /
||
SEE MORE SYNONYMS FOR pseudonym ON THESAURUS.COM

noun

a fictitious name used by an author to conceal his or her identity; pen name.Compare allonym(def 1).

RELATED CONTENT

The Month Of March And “Marching” Have A Historical LinkRead more in this article about some frequently asked questions and fun facts related to our definitions.
READ MORE

RELATED WORDS

alias, handle, nickname, anonym, incognito, AKA, ananym

Nearby words

pseudomyxoma peritonei, pseudoneoplasm, pseudonephritis, pseudoneuritis, pseudoneurogenic bladder, pseudonym, pseudonymity, pseudonymous, pseudonymously, pseudopapilledema, pseudoparalysis

Origin of pseudonym

1840–50; < Greek pseudṓnymon false name; see pseud-, -onym
SYNONYMS FOR pseudonym

Word story

The English noun pseudonym comes via the French adjective and noun pseudonym, in French originally meaning “(pertaining to) one who writes or publishes under an alias,” and then “(pertaining to) a name chosen by someone to conceal his or her identity.”
The Greek origin of pseudonym (and even of its parts) is pretty obvious: Greek pseudṓnymos “under a false name, falsely called” is a compound whose first element pseudo- “false, lying” is a combining form of pseûdos “a lie.” The second element -ṓnymos is a combining form deriving from the noun ónoma (Doric and Aeolic ónyma ) “name.”
The English noun appeared in the early 1800s, but the adjective pseudonymous was recorded more than a century earlier, in Edward Phillips’s 1706 dictionary New World of Words.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pseudonym

British Dictionary definitions for pseudonym

pseudonym

/ (ˈsjuːdəˌnɪm) /

noun

a fictitious name adopted, esp by an author
Derived Formspseudonymity, noun

Word Origin for pseudonym

C19: via French from Greek pseudōnumon
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 pseudonym

pseudonym


n.

1828, in part a back-formation from pseudonymous, in part from German pseudonym and French pseudonyme (adj.), from Greek pseudonymos "having a false name, under a false name," from pseudes "false" (see pseudo-) + onyma, Aeolic dialectal variant of onoma "name" (see name (n.)).

"Possibly a dictionary word" at first [Barnhart]. Fowler calls it "a queer out-of-the-way term for an everyday thing." Properly in reference to made-up names; the name of an actual author or person of reputation affixed to a work he or she did not write is an allonym. An author's actual name affixed to his or her own work is an autonym (1867).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper