[see-mee-ot-ik, sem-ee, see-mahy-]

adjective Also se·mi·ot·i·cal.

of or relating to signs.
of or relating to semiotics.
Medicine/Medical. of or relating to symptoms; symptomatic.


Nearby words

  1. seminuria,
  2. semiochemical,
  3. semiofficial,
  4. semiology,
  5. semiopaque,
  6. semiotician,
  7. semiotics,
  8. semioviparous,
  9. semipalatinsk,
  10. semipalmate

Origin of semiotic

1615–20; (def 3) < Greek sēmeiōtikós significant, equivalent to sēmeiō-, verbid stem of sēmeioûn to interpret as a sign (derivative of Greek sēmeîon sign) + -tikos -tic; (def 4) < Greek sēmeiōtikḗ, noun use of feminine of sēmeiōtikós, adapted by John Locke (on the model of Greek logikḗ logic, etc.; see -ic) to mean “the doctrine of signs”; (defs 1, 2) based on Locke's coinage or a reanalysis of the Gk word Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for semiotical




relating to signs and symbols, esp spoken or written signs
relating to semiotics
of, relating to, or resembling the symptoms of disease; symptomatic

Word Origin for semiotic

C17: from Greek sēmeiōtikos taking note of signs, from sēmeion a sign

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 semiotical



1620s, "of symptoms, relating to signs of diseases," from Greek semeiotikos "significant," also "observant of signs," adjective form of semeiosis "indication," from semeioun "to signal, to interpret a sign," from semeion "a sign, mark, token," from sema "sign" (see semantic). Its use in psychology dates to 1923. Related: Semiotical (1580s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper