One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A noun used to denote the natives or inhabitants of a particular country, state, city, etc.‘he struggled for the correct demonym for the people of Manchester’
- ‘A 19-year-old Nampan (that's the demonym for Nampa, Idaho) is in the slammer after he was caught cutting through the roof of a pawnshop.’
- ‘He should at least have gotten the correct demonym—people from Gibraltar are Gibraltarians, not Gibraltans.’
- ‘There really isn't a commonly used demonym for British people.’
- ‘Inhabited by Liverpudlians, Liverpool wins my award for the best demonym ever.’
- ‘Each state has an official demonym via the US Government Printing Office—for example, people from North Carolina are called North Carolinians.’
Mid 19th century (in the sense ‘descriptive term used by a writer as a pen name’): from Greek dēmos ‘the people’ + onuma ‘name’. The current sense dates from the 1990s.
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