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See also: Romanize


Alternative forms[edit]


Roman +‎ -ize


romanize (third-person singular simple present romanizes, present participle romanizing, simple past and past participle romanized)

  1. (transitive) To put letters or words written in another writing system into the Latin (Roman) alphabet.
    Synonyms: Latinize, transliterate
    The author romanizes Chinese names using the Wade–Giles system rather than the Pinyin system.
    • 1912, Lord William Gascoyne-Cecil, Changing China, New York: D. Appleton, Chapter 10, p. 132,[2]
      A new system has been invented by which Chinese can be written in our letters as pronounced. This is called by the rather uncouth name of “Romanised.”
    • 2015, James Lambert, “Lexicography as a teaching tool: A Hong Kong case study”, in Lan Li, Jamie McKeown and Liming Liu, editors, Dictionaries and corpora: Innovations in reference science. Proceedings of ASIALEX 2015 Hong Kong, Hong Kong: The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, page 147:
      Some of the Chinese students had difficulty comprehending the need to Romanize the Chinese etymons.
  2. (transitive, historical, usually capitalized) To bring under the authority or influence of Rome.
    • 1658, Thomas Browne, Hydriotaphia, Urn Burial, London: Hen. Brome, Chapter 2, p. 28,[3]
      But since this custome was probably disused before their Invasion or Conquest, and the Romanes confessedly practised the same, since their possession of this Island, the most assured account will fall upon the Romanes, or Brittains Romanized.
  3. (transitive, intransitive, usually capitalized) To make or become Roman in character or style.[1]
    • 1680, John Dryden, Ovid’s Epistles translated by several hands, London: Jacob Tonson, Preface,[4]
      [] perhaps he has Romaniz’d his Grecian Dames too much, and made them speak sometimes as if they had been born in the City of Rome, and under the Empire of Augustus.
    • 1790, Thomas Pennant, Of London, London: Robt. Faulder, p. 8,[5]
      Long before this period, it [London] was fully romanized, and the customs, manners, buildings, and arts of the conqueror adopted.
  4. (transitive, intransitive, usually capitalized) To make or become Roman Catholic in religion (by conversion), character or style.
    Synonym: Latinize
    • 1661, John Corbet, The Interest of England in the Matter of Religion, London: George Thomason, Section 11, p. 50,[6]
      [] the more primitive times of Protestantism were more leaning to that which Romanizing spirits have called Puritanism.
  5. (transitive, obsolete) To fill with Latin words or idioms.
    Synonym: Latinize
    • 1668, John Dryden, Of Dramatick Poesie, London: Henry Herringman, p. 50,[7]
      perhaps too, he [Ben Jonson] did a little to much Romanize our Tongue, leaving the words which he translated almost as much Latine as he found them: wherein though he learnedly followed the Idiom of their language, he did not enough comply with ours.

Derived terms[edit]



  • “romanize” in the Canadian Oxford Dictionary, Second Edition, Oxford University Press, 2004.
  • NOAD, 2nd ed.
  1. ^ Thomas Blount, Glossographia, London: George Sawbridge, 1661: “Romanize [] to imitate the speech or fashion of Rome, or the Romans.”[1]





  1. first-person singular (eu) present subjunctive of romanizar
  2. third-person singular (ele and ela, also used with você and others) present subjunctive of romanizar
  3. third-person singular (você) affirmative imperative of romanizar
  4. third-person singular (você) negative imperative of romanizar