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Word of the Day
Thursday, September 15, 2016

Definitions for eponym

  1. a person, real or imaginary, from whom something, as a tribe, nation, or place, takes or is said to take its name: Brut, the supposed grandson of Aeneas, is the eponym of the Britons.
  2. a word based on or derived from a person's name.
  3. any ancient official whose name was used to designate his year of office.

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Citations for eponym
What Calvin Klein, designer, wanted to draw attention to was Calvin Klein, trademark. Still, if some of the attention paid to the man himself came along in the bargain; if the border between eponym and product blurred, connoting a state of mind and a way of being that were new and dark and strange and uniquely compelling--well, that didn't hurt business a bit. James Kaplan, "The Triumph of Calvinism," New York, September 18, 1995
Same day, after lunch at a hummus joint where you can't always rule out psychedelic toxins in the tabouli, she happens to be passing the neighborhood Uncle Dizzy's and here's the ol' eponym himself ... She pauses to stare one eyeblink too long and Dizzy spots her. Thomas Pynchon, Bleeding Edge, 2013
Origin of eponym
Eponym is a back formation from the adjective eponymous, which, in turn, can be traced to the Greek terms epí meaning "upon," and ónyma, a dialectal variant of ónoma meaning "name." It entered English in the mid-1800s.