Definition of Germanic in English:

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Pronunciation: /jərˈmanik/


1Relating to or denoting the branch of the Indo-European language family that includes English, German, Dutch, Frisian, the Scandinavian languages, and Gothic.
Example sentences
  • Frisian is a Germanic language similar to both Dutch and English.
  • One of these Germanic languages - Frisian - evolved into English.
  • The Norwegian language, along with Danish and Swedish, belongs to the mutually comprehensible northern branch of the Germanic family of languages.
1.1Relating to or denoting the peoples of ancient northern and western Europe speaking Germanic languages.
Example sentences
  • As western Europe fell to the Germanic invasions, imperial power shifted to the Byzantine Empire, that is, the eastern part of the Roman Empire, with its capital at Constantinople.
  • Einhard tells us that Charlemagne himself commanded that ancient Germanic songs should be preserved.
  • Holy history was replaced by an ancient Germanic mythology.
2Having characteristics of or attributed to Germans or Germany: she had an almost Germanic regard for order
More example sentences
  • Likewise, his Daphnis is characterized by precision, and by concern for form, attributes which seem more Germanic than French.
  • It has to be the Germanic part of our national character, this desire that everyone should conform.
  • So they went for a Cardinal, a hardedged enforcer with a Germanic preoccupation with discipline and order.


1The Germanic languages collectively. See also East Germanic, North Germanic, West Germanic.
Example sentences
  • This codification of 643 was the result of a triple translation: from oral to written, from Germanic to Latin, and from memory to document.
  • The same root gave us ‘heavy’ from Germanic * hafigaz ‘containing something, having weight.’
  • Nearby Hurstead may have come from ‘stede’, which meant site or place in Germanic.
1.1The unrecorded ancient language from which the Germanic languages developed, thought to have been spoken on the shores of the Baltic Sea in the 3rd millennium BC. Also called Proto-Germanic.
Example sentences
  • To reconstruct anything above the level of Germanic, we have to have data from languages outside of Germanic.


Mid 17th century: from Latin Germanicus, from Germanus (see German).

Words that rhyme with Germanic

aldermanic, botanic, Brahmanic, Britannic, epiphanic, galvanic, Hispanic, interoceanic, Koranic, manganic, manic, mechanic, messianic, oceanic, organic, panic, Puranic, Romanic, satanic, shamanic, talismanic, titanic, transoceanic, tympanic, volcanic

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: Ger·man·ic

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