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 (hī-pŏk′ə-rĭz′əm, hī′pə-kôr′ĭz′əm)
1. A name of endearment; a pet name.
2. The use of such names.

[Late Latin hypocorisma, from Greek hupokorisma, from hupokorizesthai, to call by endearing names : hupo-, beneath, secretly; see hypo- + korizesthai, to caress (from koros, boy or korē, girl; see ker- in Indo-European roots).]

hy′po·co·ris′tic (hī′pə-kə-rĭs′tĭk) adj. & n.
hy′po·co·ris′ti·cal·ly adv.


(haɪˈpɒkəˌrɪzəm) or


1. (Linguistics) a pet name, esp one using a diminutive affix: "Sally" is a hypocorism for "Sarah".
2. (Linguistics) another word for euphemism1
[C19: from Greek hupokorisma, from hupokorizesthai to use pet names, from hypo- beneath + korizesthai, from korē girl, koros boy]
hypocoristic, hypocoristical adj
ˌhypocoˈristically adv


(haɪˈpɒk əˌrɪz əm)

1. a pet name.
2. the use of pet names.
3. the use of forms imitative of baby talk.
[1840–50; < Greek hypokórisma pet name. See hypocoristic, -ism]


1. the creation or use of pet names, as Dick for Richard.
2. a pet name.
3. baby talk. — hypocoristic, adj.
See also: Names
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.hypocorism - a name of endearment (especially one using a diminutive suffix); "`Billy' is a hypocorism for `William'"
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"