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1. Of or relating to the assignment of names.
2. Grammar Of or relating to a common noun.
A name or descriptive epithet.

[Middle English, common (noun), from Old French appelatif, from Late Latin appelātīvus, from Latin appellātus, past participle of appellāre, to call upon, entreat; see appeal.]

ap·pel′la·tive·ly adv.


1. an identifying name or title; appellation
2. (Grammar) grammar another word for common noun
3. of or relating to a name or title
4. (Grammar) (of a proper noun) used as a common noun
apˈpellatively adv


(əˈpɛl ə tɪv)

n. adj.
3. tending toward or serving for the assigning of names: the appellative function of some primitive rites.
4. of or pertaining to a common noun.
[1375–1425; late Middle English (< Middle French) < Late Latin]
ap•pel′la•tive•ly, adv.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.appellative - identifying word or words by which someone or something is called and classified or distinguished from othersappellative - identifying word or words by which someone or something is called and classified or distinguished from others
name - a language unit by which a person or thing is known; "his name really is George Washington"; "those are two names for the same thing"
street name - an alternative name that a person chooses or is given (especially in inner city neighborhoods); "her street name is Bonbon"
byname, cognomen, moniker, nickname, sobriquet, soubriquet - a familiar name for a person (often a shortened version of a person's given name); "Joe's mother would not use his nickname and always called him Joseph"; "Henry's nickname was Slim"
form of address, title of respect, title - an identifying appellation signifying status or function: e.g. `Mr.' or `General'; "the professor didn't like his friends to use his formal title"
title - an appellation signifying nobility; "`your majesty' is the appropriate title to use in addressing a king"
Adj.1.appellative - pertaining to or dealing with or used as a common noun
2.appellative - inclined to or serving for the giving of names; "the appellative faculty of children"; "the appellative function of some primitive rites"
denotative, denotive - having the power of explicitly denoting or designating or naming


The word or words by which one is called and identified:
Slang: handle, moniker.
References in classic literature ?
But at this question, Queequeg, who had twice or thrice before taken part in similar ceremonies, looked no ways abashed; but taking the offered pen, copied upon the paper, in the proper place, an exact counterpart of a queer round figure which was tattooed upon his arm; so that through Captain Peleg's obstinate mistake touching his appellative, it stood something like this: -- Quohog his mark.
Old Marmaduke, for this formidable prenomen was a kind of appellative to the race, brought with him, to that asylum of the persecuted an abundance of the good things of this life.
In response to his appellative, taken from another non-original intertext--Mussorgsky's Boris Godunov is an opera based on Pushkin's previous play of the same title--Andrew eventually displaces the designation of Pretender back to the opera singer and, from him, to George W.
The fundamental pathway towards contriving the entirety of the writing is achieved through the reader's fulfillment of the role of a critical category and to allow the mindset to explore the appellative structure both vertically and horizontally.
Nord justifiably labels the referential, expressive, and appellative functions as optional ones.
As toponymy is rather conservative, it often preserves outdated vocabulary which has lost its appellative use.
TVU CL screening should now be offered to all pregnant women: hence the appellative 'universal CL screening.
Giorgio Spangher, Le impugnazioni, in RESPONSABILITA DEGLI ENTI PER ILLECITI AMM1NISTRATIVI DIPENDENTI DA REATO, at 373, analyzes the problems that emerge from the inadequate legislation regarding appellative remedies, maintaining that they cannot be easily resolved by applying the rules contained in the CPC.
To avoid pitfalls of homogenizing high degrees of internal differentiation within what gets termed 'nature' (Bakker and Bridge, 2006), I develop an appreciation of the diverse animal ethologies and bodies currently lumped under the appellative 'lively commodity' and subsumed by the term 'encounter'.
It is not by chance that Baudelaire uses the comprehensive appellative of peintre referring to the artistic singularity; indeed, as the emergence of Impressionism may suggest, painting seemed the quicker art form to perceive and reflect modern acceleration.
The killer monkey, however, is called "man of the woods," an appellative that follows the way in which orangutans were named in popular natural history books of the time (Irmscher 1999:206), but also reminds one of Audubon's self-fashioning as a "woodsman" (Audubon 1831-1949: vol.
Direct address implies direct involvement, while reference, even when it fulfills an appellative function, creates greater distance and hence reduces the potential threat to the addressee's face.