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See also: american, americàn, and Američan



English Wikipedia has an article on:

Alternative formsEdit


From America +‎ -n, or via Modified Latin Americanus (Latin americanus) with the same etymology.


  • IPA(key): /əˈmɛɹɪkən/
  • (file)


American (plural Americans)

  1. Originally, a native or inhabitant of the British North American colonies of European descent; now, a person born in, or a citizen or inhabitant of, the United States of America. [from 17th c.]
    • 2008, Chris Moss, The Guardian, 9 Augist 2008:
      They say Americans don't walk. Well, they do in the Navajo Nation - because even if northern Arizona has gigabytes of photogenic vistas, getting out of the car is the only way to get your boots covered in desert dust and soak up the silence.
  2. An indigenous inhabitant of the Americas; a Native American or an American Indian (now chiefly with qualifying word). [from 16th c.]
    • 1711, Joseph Addison, The Spectator, 56.1:
      The Americans believe that all creatures have souls.
    • 2012, Jonathan Keates, ‘Mon Père, ce héros’, Literary Review, 402:
      Within a few months the ‘slave Alexandre’ had been successfully transformed into what, across the Channel, was called a ‘blackamoor dandy’. Parisians preferred the more politely euphemistic term ‘American’.
  3. An inhabitant of the Americas. More often this is specified as either North American, Central American or South American.
    Every American's origin is, historically speaking, by immigration, if scientific speculation that points to a human origin in Africa and a migration to the New World from Eurasia turns out to be correct.
  4. (uncountable, US printing, rare, dated) A size of type smaller than German, 1-point type.




Proper nounEdit


  1. The English language as spoken in the U.S.; American English.
    • 1942, Rebecca West, Black Lamb and Grey Falcon (Canongate 2006), page 756:
      We sat down in the central square and drank coffee and a man came up and spoke to us in American.
    • 1998, Rush Hour, written by Jim Kouf and Ross LaManna, New Line Cinema:
      JAMES CARTER: Mr. Rice-a-Roni; don't even speak American.
    • 2014, Fury, written by David Ayer, Columbia Pictures:
      DON COLLIER: This is an American tank; we talk American.



American (comparative more American, superlative most American)

  1. Of or pertaining to the Americas. More often this is specified with a qualifier, such as "North American", "Central American", "South American", etc.
  2. Of, from, or pertaining to the United States of America, its people or its culture.
    Thanksgiving is an American tradition.
    He married an American woman in order to get an American passport.
    • 1851 October 18, Herman Melville, chapter 1, in The Whale, 1st British edition, London: Richard Bentley, OCLC 14262177; Moby-Dick; or, The Whale, 1st American edition, New York, N.Y.: Harper & Brothers; London: Richard Bentley, 14 November 1851, OCLC 57395299:
      Should you ever be athirst in the great American desert, try this experiment, if your caravan happen to be supplied with a metaphysical professor.

Usage notesEdit

Sometimes (usually outside of the U.S.) used pejoratively (see also anti-Americanism).



The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

Derived termsEdit

Pages starting with "American".

See alsoEdit