Aboriginal

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See also: aboriginal

English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From aborigine +‎ -al, aborigine being from Latin ab origine (from the beginning).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (US) IPA(key): /ˌæb.əˈɹɪd͡ʒ.n̩.l̩/, /ˌæb.əˈɹɪd͡ʒ.ɪn.l̩/
  • Hyphenation: Ab‧orig‧in‧al
  • (file)

Adjective[edit]

Aboriginal (comparative more Aboriginal, superlative most Aboriginal)

  1. Of or pertaining to Australian Aboriginal peoples, Aborigines, or their language. [First attested in the 19th century.]
  2. alternative case form of aboriginal

Synonyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

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 Help:How to check translations.

Noun[edit]

Aboriginal (plural Aboriginals)

  1. An Aboriginal inhabitant of Australia, Aborigine. [First attested in the 19th century.]
  2. alternative case form of aboriginal

Translations[edit]

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 Help:How to check translations.

Usage notes[edit]

Given that -al is an adjective suffix (and that Aboriginal was originally an adjective, Aborigines being the original noun), the usage of aboriginal as a noun was for a time considered incorrect.

Proper noun[edit]

Aboriginal

  1. Any of the native languages spoken by Australian aborigines.

Usage notes[edit]

In Canada, Aboriginal is most commonly capitalized (indicated by its status as the main headword in the Canadian Oxford Dictionary). The term has official status in the Constitution Act of 1982, and while recognizing that it is encountered in lowercase, since 1994 the Government of Canada has recommended the word be always capitalized (like, for example, Asian, Hispanic, and Nordic) and that it be used as a modifier, not a proper noun. It is used in this way by the Canadian Hansard and the Canadian Oxford Dictionary.

The U.S. Chicago Manual of Style recommends to capitalize ethnic groups and their associated adjectives: “Aborigines; an Aborigine; Aboriginal art”.

References[edit]