Meaning of ETHNIC in English


I. ethnic noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English, from Late Latin ethnicus, from Greek ethnikos, adjective

obsolete : heathen , pagan

impure ethnics — John Milton

II. eth·nic ˈethnik, -nēk adjective

Etymology: Middle English, from Late Latin ethnicus, from Greek ethnikos foreign, gentile, national, from ethnos nation + -ikos -ic — more at ethnos

1. : of or relating to the Gentiles or to nations not converted to Christianity : heathen , pagan

ancient ethnic revels of a faith long since forsaken — H.W.Longfellow


a. : relating to community of physical and mental traits possessed by the members of a group as a product of their common heredity and cultural tradition

influenced by ethnic and cultural ties — J.F.Kennedy

the boundaries along the West African coast were not plotted with regard to the ancient ethnic frontiers — A.H.Young-O'Brien

b. : having or originating from racial, linguistic, and cultural ties with a specific group

Negroes, Irish, Italians, Germans, Poles, and other ethnic groups — F.J.Brown & J.S.Roucek

displaced persons, 653 of them ethnic Germans — New York Herald Tribune

3. : originating in an exotic primitive culture

ethnic music

III. ethnic noun

( -s )

Etymology: Greek ethnikon, neuter of ethnikos national

: ethnicon

IV. ethnic noun

: a member of an ethnic group ; especially : a member of a minority group who retains the customs, language, or social views of his group

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.