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See also: Aboriginal



See Aboriginal.


  • (US) IPA(key): /ˌæb.əˈɹɪd͡ʒ.n̩.l̩/, /ˌæb.əˈɹɪd͡ʒ.ɪn.l̩/
  • (file)


aboriginal (comparative more aboriginal, superlative most aboriginal)

  1. First according to historical or scientific records; original; indigenous; primitive. [First attested in the mid 17th century.][1]
    • 1814, William Wordsworth, The Excursion[1], Longman et al., page 277:
      Green in the Church-yard, beautiful and green; / [] / And mantled o'er with aboriginal turf / And everlasting flowers.
    • 1851 November 14, Herman Melville, “Knights and Squires”, in Moby-Dick; or, The Whale, 1st American edition, New York, N.Y.: Harper & Brothers; London: Richard Bentley, OCLC 57395299, page 131:
      Tashtego's long, lean, sable hair, his high cheek bones, and black rounding eyes— [] all this sufficiently proclaimed him an inheritor of the unvitiated blood of those proud warrior hunters, who, in quest of the great New England moose, had scoured, bow in hand, the aboriginal forests of the main.
  2. Living in a land before colonization by the Europeans. [First attested in the late 17th century.][1]
    • 1851, Herman Melville, Moby Dick, Chapter 2:
      Where else but from Nantucket did those aboriginal whalemen, the Red-Men, first sally out in canoes to give chase to the Leviathan?
  3. Alternative letter-case form of Aboriginal [First attested in the late 18th century.][1]


Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]



aboriginal (plural aboriginals)

  1. An animal or plant native to a region. [First attested in the mid 18th century.][1]
    • 1839, Charles Darwin, Journal of researches into the natural history and geology of the Countries Visited During the Voyage of H. M. S. Beagle:
      It may be welldoubted whether this frog is an aboriginal of these islands.
  2. Alternative letter-case form of Aboriginal [First attested in the mid 18th century.][1]

Usage notes[edit]

  • Using uncapitalized aboriginal to refer to people or anything associated with people may cause offence.
  • In Canada and Australia, style manuals recommend against using the noun Aboriginal for a person or people.
  • See also the usage notes under Aboriginal.


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.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Lesley Brown, editor-in-chief; William R. Trumble and Angus Stevenson, editors (2002), “aboriginal”, in The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary on Historical Principles, 5th edition, Oxford; New York, N.Y.: Oxford University Press, →ISBN, page 6.



  • IPA(key): /aboɾixiˈnal/, [a.β̞o.ɾi.xiˈnal]


aboriginal m or f (plural aboriginales)

  1. Aborigine (original inhabitant of Australia)
    Synonym: aborigen