Go to 'thermo-' entry Go to 'dino-' entry Go to 'chondro-' entry Go to 'aero-' entry Go to '-logy' entry Go to 'thaumato-' entry Go to 'nano-' entry Go to '-sophy' entry Go to 'bucco-' entry Go to '-ism' entry Go to '-lysis' entry Go to 'galacto-' entry Go to '-anthropy' entry Go to 'pneumo-' entry Go to '-ploitation' entry Go to '-lithic' entry Go to '-sepalous' entry Go to 'onco-' entry Go to '-parous' entry Go to 'dermato-' entry Go to 'multi-' entry Go to 'dodeca-' entry Go to '-zoon' entry Go to 'vermi-' entry Go to 'crystallo-' entry Go to 'biblio-' entry Go to 'eco-' entry Go to 'juxta-' entry Go to 'facio-' entry
Affixes: the building blocks of English
Affixes: the building blocks of English

-onym Also -onymy, -onymic, and -onymous.

A name.

[Greek onuma, name.]

The ending principally appears in words that describe kinds of words. See the table below for some examples. Abstract nouns for the state or concept are formed in -onymy: homonymy, metonymy, toponymy. Adjectives are formed in -onymic or -onymous, sometimes both, though the former is rather more common (eponymous, metonymic, synonymous, toponymic).

Examples of words in -onym
All word origins are from Greek.

acronym a word formed from the initial letters of other words akron, end, tip
anonym an anonymous person or publication, or a pseudonym an-, without
antonym a word opposite in meaning to another anti-, against
cryptonym a code name kruptos, hidden
eponym a person after whom a discovery, invention, place, or the like is named or thought to be named epi, upon
heteronym each of two or more words which are spelled identically but have different sounds and meanings heteros, other
homonym each of two or more words having the same spelling or pronunciation but different meanings and origins homos, same
hyponym a word of more specific meaning, a subcategory of a more general class hupo, under
metonym a word, name, or expression used as a substitute for something else with which it is closely associated metōnumia, change of name
pseudonym a fictitious name, especially one used by an author pseudēs, false
synonym a word or phrase that means the same as another word or phrase in the same language sun-, with
toponym a place name, especially one derived from a topographical feature topos, place

Visit Michael Quinion’s World Wide Words site for 2000+ articles on English!

Copyright © Michael Quinion 2008–. All rights reserved. Page last updated 23 September 2008.
Your comments and suggestions on the site are very welcome.