An example of common is the knowledge of drivers to stop at a red light.
- belonging equally to, or shared by, two or more or by all: the common interests of a group
- belonging or relating to the community at large; public: common carriers
- widely existing; general; prevalent: common knowledge
- widely but unfavorably known: a common criminal
- met with or occurring frequently; familiar; usual: a common sight
- basic; simple; rudimentary: common courtesy
- not of the upper classes; of the masses: the common man
- having no rank: a common soldier
- below ordinary; inferior: common ware
- not refined; vulgar; low; coarse
- Anat. formed of or dividing into branches
- designating a noun that refers to any of a group or class: “book,” “apple,” and “street” are common nouns
- designating gender that can be either masculine or feminine: the word “child” is of common gender
- Math. belonging equally to two or more quantities: a common denominator
Origin of commonMiddle English commun from Old French comun from Classical Latin communis (OL comoinis), shared by all or many from Indo-European an unverified form kom-moini-, common ( from an unverified form kom-, com- + an unverified form moini-, achievement from base an unverified form mei-, to exchange, barter) from source Old English gemæne, public, general, German gemein: see mean
- [often pl., with pl. or sing. v.] land owned or used by all the inhabitants of a place; tract of open public land, esp. as a park in a city or town
- the office or service suitable for any of a class of festivals
- the ordinary of the Mass
- Law the right that a person has, in common with the owner or others, in the land or waters of another
- a. Belonging equally to or shared equally by two or more; joint: common interests.b. Of or relating to the community as a whole; public: for the common good.
- Widespread; prevalent: Gas stations became common as the use of cars grew.
- a. Occurring frequently or habitually; usual: It is common for movies to last 90 minutes or more.b. Most widely known; ordinary: the common housefly.
- Having no special designation, status, or rank: a common sailor.
- a. Not distinguished by superior or noteworthy characteristics; average: the common spectator.b. Of no special quality; standard: common procedure.c. Of mediocre or inferior quality; second-rate: common cloth.
- Unrefined or coarse in manner; vulgar: behavior that branded him as common.
- Grammar a. Either masculine or feminine in gender.b. Representing one or all of the members of a class; not designating a unique entity.
- commons The common people; commonalty.
- commons used with a sing. or pl. verb a. The social class composed of commoners.b. The parliamentary representatives of this class.
- Commons The House of Commons.
- A tract of land, usually in a centrally located spot, belonging to or used by a community as a whole: a band concert on the village common.
- The legal right of a person to use the lands or waters of another, as for fishing.
- commons used with a sing. verb A building or hall for dining, typically at a university or college.
- Common stock.
- Ecclesiastical A service used for a particular class of festivals.
Origin of commonMiddle English commune from Old French commun from Latin commūnis ; see mei-1 in Indo-European roots.
(comparative commoner or more common, superlative commonest or most common)
- Mutual; shared by more than one.
- The two competitors have the common aim of winning the championship. Winning the championship is an aim common to the two competitors.
- Occurring or happening regularly or frequently; usual.
- It is common to find sharks off this coast.
- Found in large numbers or in a large quantity.
- Sharks are common in these waters.
- Simple, ordinary or vulgar.
- (grammar) In some languages, particularly Germanic languages, of the gender originating from the coalescence of the masculine and feminine categories of nouns.
- Of or pertaining to uncapitalized nouns in English, i.e., common nouns vs. proper nouns.
- Vernacular, referring to the name of a kind of plant or animal, i.e., common name vs. scientific name.
- Mutual good, shared by more than one.
- A tract of land in common ownership; common land.
- The people; the community.
- (law) The right of taking a profit in the land of another, in common either with the owner or with other persons; so called from the community of interest which arises between the claimant of the right and the owner of the soil, or between the claimants and other commoners entitled to the same right.
(third-person singular simple present commons, present participle commoning, simple past and past participle commoned)
- Embassadors were sent upon both parts, and divers means of entreaty were commoned of.
From Middle English comun, from Anglo-Norman comun, from Old French comun (rare in the Gallo-Romance languages, but reinforced as a Carolingian calque of Frankish gemeini, gamaini "common" in Old French), from Latin commūnis (“common, public, general”), from Proto-Indo-European *ko-moin-i (“held in common”). Displaced native Middle English ȝemǣne, imene (“common, general, universal”) (from Old English ġemǣne (“common, universal”)), Middle English mǣne, mene (“mean, common”) (also from Old English ġemǣne (“common, universal”)), Middle English samen, somen (“in common, together”) (from Old English samen (“together”)).