• synonyms


[trans-lit-uh-reyt, tranz-]
See more synonyms for transliterate on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object), trans·lit·er·at·ed, trans·lit·er·at·ing.
  1. to change (letters, words, etc.) into corresponding characters of another alphabet or language: to transliterate the Greek Χ as ch.
Show More

Origin of transliterate

1860–65; trans- + Latin līter(a) letter1 + -ate1
Related formstrans·lit·er·a·tion, nountrans·lit·er·a·tor, noun
Can be confusedtranslate transliterate
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for transliteration

explanation, rendering, version, adaptation, rendition, reading, transcription, elucidation, gloss, crib, construction, restatement, key, paraphrase, simplification, decoding, rephrasing, transliteration, metaphrase

Examples from the Web for transliteration

Historical Examples of transliteration

  • Position your mouse over the line to see the transliteration.

    The Complete Poetical Works of Samuel Taylor Coleridge

    Samuel Taylor Coleridge

  • Longer passages have the transliteration immediately following.

  • Position your mouse over the word to see the transliteration.

  • A transliteration is provided, hover your mouse over it to see it.

  • If your system allows for it, hovering over them will show a transliteration.

British Dictionary definitions for transliteration


  1. (tr) to transcribe (a word, etc, in one alphabet) into corresponding letters of another alphabetthe Greek word λογοσ can be transliterated as ``logos''
Show More
Derived Formstransliteration, nountransliterator, noun

Word Origin for transliterate

C19: trans- + -literate, from Latin līttera letter
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 transliteration


1861, from trans- + literation.

Show More



"to write a word in the characters of another alphabet," 1861, apparently coined by German philologist Max Müller (1823-1900), from trans- "across" (see trans-) + Latin littera (also litera) "letter, character" (see letter).

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper