A a


    • US Pronunciation
    • US IPA
    • UK Pronunciation
    • UK IPA
    • [ak-ruh-nim]
    • /ˈæk rə nɪm/
    • /ˈæk.rə.nɪm/
    • US Pronunciation
    • US IPA
    • [ak-ruh-nim]
    • /ˈæk rə nɪm/

Definitions of acronym word

  • countable noun acronym An acronym is a word composed of the first letters of the words in a phrase, especially when this is used as a name. An example of an acronym is NATO which is made up of the first letters of the 'North Atlantic Treaty Organization'. 3
  • noun acronym a pronounceable name made up of a series of initial letters or parts of words; for example, UNESCO for the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization 3
  • noun acronym a word formed from the first (or first few) letters of a series of words, as radar, from radio detecting and ranging 3
  • noun acronym a word formed from the initial letters or groups of letters of words in a set phrase or series of words and pronounced as a separate word, as Wac from Women's Army Corps, OPEC from Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, or loran from long-range navigation. 1
  • noun acronym a set of initials representing a name, organization, or the like, with each letter pronounced separately; an initialism. 1
  • noun acronym an acrostic. 1

Information block about the term

Origin of acronym

First appearance:

before 1940
One of the 7% newest English words
First recorded in 1940-45; acr- + -onym

Historical Comparancy

Parts of speech for Acronym


acronym popularity

A common word. It’s meaning is known to most children of preschool age. About 85% of English native speakers know the meaning and use the word.
Most Europeans know this English word. The frequency of it’s usage is somewhere between "mom" and "screwdriver".

acronym usage trend in Literature

This diagram is provided by Google Ngram Viewer

Synonyms for acronym

noun acronym

  • phrase — Grammar. a sequence of two or more words arranged in a grammatical construction and acting as a unit in a sentence. (in English) a sequence of two or more words that does not contain a finite verb and its subject or that does not consist of clause elements such as subject, verb, object, or complement, as a preposition and a noun or pronoun, an adjective and noun, or an adverb and verb.
  • cipher — A cipher is a secret system of writing that you use to send messages.
  • composition — When you talk about the composition of something, you are referring to the way in which its various parts are put together and arranged.
  • wordplay — clever or subtle repartee; verbal wit.
  • abbreviation — An abbreviation is a short form of a word or phrase, made by leaving out some of the letters or by using only the first letter of each word.

Top questions with acronym

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See also

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