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Of or relating to phenomena considered as meaningful structural units within a system such as a language or culture.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
of or relating to the role specific elements play in a significant system (such as linguistics)
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
of or pertaining to a significant unit that functions in contrast with other units in a language or other system of behavior. Compare etic.
[1950–55; extracted from phonemic]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.