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See also: génocide


English Wikipedia has an article on:
Raphael Lemkin describing how he became interested in coining the term "genocide"; 1949 CBS interview


Coined by lawyer of Polish-Jewish descent (1900-1959) Raphael Lemkin in 1943 or 1944 in reference to the Armenian Genocide and the Jewish Holocaust.[1][2][3][4] From the stem of Ancient Greek γένος (génos, race, kind) (cognate with Latin gēns (tribe, clan), whence genus) + -cide (killing, killer).[5] Compare genticide.


  • IPA(key): /ˈd͡ʒɛnəsaɪd/
    • (file)


genocide (countable and uncountable, plural genocides)

  1. The systematic and deliberate destruction of a group of people, typically by killing substantial numbers of them, on the basis of their ethnicity, religion, or nationality.
    • 1944, November, Axis Rule in Occupied Europe: Laws of Occupation, "Analysis of Government - Proposals for Redress", chapter 9, page 79
      For the German occupying authorities war thus appears to offer the most appropriate occasion for carrying out their policy of genocide.
    • 1984, 1:49:22 from the start, in Dune[3] (Science Fiction), spoken by Shaddam IV, →OCLC:
      Shaddam IV: I want fifty legion of Sardaukar on Arrakis at once!
      Subordinate: Fifty legions? That's our entire reserves as well.
      Shaddam IV: This is genocide: the deliberate and systematic destruction of all life on Arrakis!
    • 2008 June 1, A. Dirk Moses, “Preface”, in Empire, Colony, Genocide: Conquest, Occupation, and Subaltern Resistance in World History, Berghahn Books, →ISBN, page x:
      Though most of the cases here cover European encounters with non-Europeans, it is not the intention of the book to give the impression that genocide is a function of European colonialism and imperialism alone.
    A genocide will always be followed by the denial that it ever happened.
  2. (by extension) The systematic killing of substantial numbers of people on other grounds.
  3. (by extension) The systematic suppression of ideas or practices on the basis of cultural or ethnic origin; culturicide.
    • 1986, James Stuart Olson, Raymond Wilson, Native Americans in the Twentieth Century, →ISBN:
      Native Americans in the twentieth century are no longer a "vanishing race" or a silent minority. They have survived centuries of cultural genocide inflicted on them by non-Native Americans— both the well-meaning and the self-seeking— []
  4. (video games, roguelikes) The elimination of an entire class of monsters by the player.
    • 2000, Kimmo Kasila, “Arch lich at Minetown bones, Help!”, in (Usenet):
      I used genocide in my first ascension, but have been genocideless ever since. Makes the game much more interesting, but then again, if one hasn't ascended yet, it will be interesting anyway.

Usage notes[edit]

English Wikipedia has an article on:

Genocide was coined to mean, and is generally used in law to mean, the destruction of an ethnic group as such (as a group). This is the case whether it is done by killing of all members of the group or other means, such as dispersing the group. In common usage, genocide is often used to mean “systematic mass killing”, whether or not the purpose is the destruction of a group or something else, such as terrorizing the group or killing a population without regard to group membership, more specifically known as democide.


  • (systematic killing of substantial numbers of people): genticide



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The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

See also[edit]


genocide (third-person singular simple present genocides, present participle genociding, simple past and past participle genocided)

  1. (transitive) To commit genocide (against); to eliminate (a group of people) completely.
    • 1986, Oversight of the Board for International Broadcasting: hearing before the Subcommittee on International Operations of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, House of Representatives, Ninety-Ninth Congress, second session, June 17, 1986, volume 4, page 145:
      Even though the Soviet constitution and that of the Ukrainian SSR contain provisions guaranteeing freedom of religion and other fundamental liberties, the Soviet government genocided the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church in the 1930's [...]
    • 2006, Get 'Em All! Kill 'Em!: Genocide, Terrorism, Righteous Communities[4], page 8:
      A clue appears in the Nazis finding the Gypsies dirty and disorderly (for not only Jews were genocided).
    • 2007, War on Truth: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About the Invasion of Iraq[5], page 66:
      You just know it makes much more sense to encourage brutal governments to buy our WMD technology than to get them to put food in the empty bellies of their people or quit genociding the populace.
    • 2016, Conflict in Ancient Greece and Rome: The Definitive Political, Social, and Military Encyclopedia[6], page 1193:
      It is unlikely that Sulla succeeded in genociding the Samnites, since their mountains offered many refuges, but in subsequent centuries the Samnites disappeared, being absorbed into the general population of Italy.

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  1. ^ “Q&A: Armenian genocide dispute”, in BBC News[1], 2016-06-02, archived from the original on 2016-06-06: “Raphael Lemkin, the Polish-Jewish lawyer who coined the term "genocide" in 1943, referred to the atrocities against Armenians as well as the Nazi massacres of Jews when describing his investigations.”
  2. ^ Sylvia Angelique Alajaji: Music and the Armenian Diaspora: Searching for Home in Exile. Indiana University Press (September 7, 2015)
  3. ^ Daniel Levy, The Holocaust and Memory in the Global Age (2006, →ISBN, page 91: "In 1943, Raphael Lemkin, a Polish Jew, coined the term "genocide" for the deliberate extermination of a people. Without a doubt, the Holocaust provided the occasion for Lemkin's attempts to warn the world of the systematic annihilation of particular groups, [] "
  4. ^ Hyde, Jennifer (2 December, 2008). "Polish Jew gave his life defining, fighting genocide". CNN.
  5. ^ Lemkin, Raphaël (1994) Axis Rule in Occupied Europe[2], Washington: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace: Division of International Law, →OCLC, page 79: “This new word, coined by the author to denote an old practice in its modern development, is made from the ancient Greek word genos (race, tribe) and the Latin cide (killing), thus corresponding in its formation to such words as tyrannicide, homocide, infanticide, etc.”




Borrowed from English genocide. Equivalent to geno- +‎ -cide.


  • IPA(key): /ˌɣeː.noːˈsi.də/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: ge‧no‧ci‧de
  • Rhymes: -idə


genocide f (plural genocides, diminutive genocidetje n)

  1. genocide
    Synonym: volkerenmoord

Derived terms[edit]


  • Indonesian: genosida