— commonness , n.
/kom"euhn/ , adj., commoner, commonest , n. adj.
1. belonging equally to, or shared alike by, two or more or all in question: common property; common interests.
2. pertaining or belonging equally to an entire community, nation, or culture; public: a common language or history; a common water-supply system.
3. joint; united: a common defense.
4. widespread; general; ordinary: common knowledge.
5. of frequent occurrence; usual; familiar: a common event; a common mistake.
6. hackneyed; trite.
7. of mediocre or inferior quality; mean; low: a rough-textured suit of the most common fabric.
8. coarse; vulgar: common manners.
9. lacking rank, station, distinction, etc.; unexceptional; ordinary: a common soldier; common people; the common man; a common thief.
10. Dial. friendly; sociable; unaffected.
11. Anat. forming or formed by two or more parts or branches: the common carotid arteries.
12. Pros. (of a syllable) able to be considered as either long or short.
a. not belonging to an inflectional paradigm; fulfilling different functions that in some languages require different inflected forms: English nouns are in the common case whether used as subject or object.
b. constituting one of two genders of a language, esp. a gender comprising nouns that were formerly masculine or feminine: Swedish nouns are either common or neuter.
c. noting a word that may refer to either a male or a female: French élève has common gender. English lacks a common gender pronoun in the third person singular.
d. (of a noun) belonging to the common gender.
14. Math. bearing a similar relation to two or more entities.
15. of, pertaining to, or being common stock: common shares.
16. Often, commons . Chiefly New England. a tract of land owned or used jointly by the residents of a community, usually a central square or park in a city or town.
17. Law. the right or liberty, in common with other persons, to take profit from the land or waters of another, as by pasturing animals on another's land (common of pasturage) or fishing in another's waters (common of piscary) .
18. commons , ( used with a sing. or pl. v. )
a. the commonalty; the nonruling class.
b. the body of people not of noble birth or not ennobled, as represented in England by the House of Commons.
c. ( cap. ) the representatives of this body.
d. ( cap. ) the House of Commons.
19. commons ,
a. ( used with a sing. v. ) a large dining room, esp. at a university or college.
b. ( usually used with a pl. v. ) Brit. food provided in such a dining room.
c. ( usually used with a pl. v. ) food or provisions for any group.
20. ( sometimes cap. ) Eccles.
a. an office or form of service used on a festival of a particular kind.
b. the ordinary of the Mass, esp. those parts sung by the choir.
c. the part of the missal and breviary containing Masses and offices of those saints assigned to them.
a. the community or public.
b. the common people.
22. in common , in joint possession or use; shared equally: They have a love of adventure in common.
[ 1250-1300; ME comun communis common, presumably orig. "sharing common duties," akin to munia duties of an office, munus task, duty, gift moin-, c. MEAN 2 ; cf. COM-, IMMUNE ]
Syn. 4. universal, prevalent, popular. See general. 5. customary, everyday. 7, 8, 9 . COMMON, VULGAR, ORDINARY refer, often with derogatory connotations of cheapness or inferiority, to what is usual or most often experienced. COMMON applies to what is accustomed, usually experienced, or inferior, to the opposite of what is exclusive or aristocratic: The park is used by the common people.
VULGAR properly means belonging to the people, or characteristic of common people; it connotes low taste, coarseness, or ill breeding: the vulgar view of things; vulgar in manners and speech. ORDINARY refers to what is to be expected in the usual order of things; it means average or below average: That is a high price for something of such ordinary quality.
Ant. 1. individual. 5. unusual.