demotic

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

First attested in 1822, from Ancient Greek δημοτικός (dēmotikós, common), from δημότης (dēmótēs, commoner), from δῆμος (dêmos, the common people).

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

demotic (not comparable)

  1. Of or for the common people.
    • 2014 March 1, Rupert Christiansen, “English translations rarely sing”, The Daily Telegraph (Review), page R19:
      Anything grandiose or historically based tends to sound flat and banal when it reaches English, partly because translators get stuck between contradictory imperatives: juggling fidelity to the original sense with what is vocally viable, they tend to resort to a genteel fustian which lacks either poetic resonance or demotic realism, adding to a sense of artificiality rather than enhancing credibility.
  2. Of, relating to, or written in the vulgar form of ancient Egyptian hieratic writing.
    demotic script is a simplified, cursive form of hieroglyphs used in ancient Egypt.
  3. Of, relating to, or written in the form of modern vernacular Greek.
    demotic Greek

Synonyms[edit]

  • (of the vulgar form of hieratic writing): enchorial

Translations[edit]

Noun[edit]

demotic (plural demotics)

  1. (linguistics) Language as spoken or written by the common people.
    • 2010, John C. Wells, accents map
      Note the intrusion into British demotic (“me and Cheryl were having”) of the valley-girl quotative be, like.

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]