Acronym Etymology, Nomenclature, Lexicography and style guides, Comparing a few examples of each type Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Sometimes, the initials continue to stand for an expanded meaning, but the original meaning is simply replaced. Some examples:

Backronyms

A backronym (or bacronym) is a phrase that is constructed "after the fact" from a previously existing word. For example, the novelist and critic Anthony Burgess once proposed that the word "book" ought to stand for "box of organized knowledge".[82] A classic real-world example of this is the name of the predecessor to the Apple Macintosh, the Apple Lisa, which was said to refer to "Local Integrated Software Architecture", but was actually named after Steve Jobs's daughter, born in 1978.

Backronyms are oftentimes used for comedic effect[citation needed]. An example of creating a backronym for comedic effect would be in naming a group or organization, the name "A.C.R.O.N.Y.M" stands for (among other things) "a clever regiment of nerdy young men".

Contrived acronyms

Acronyms are sometimes contrived, that is, deliberately designed to be especially apt for the thing being named (by having a dual meaning or by borrowing the positive connotations of an existing word). Some examples of contrived acronyms are USA PATRIOT, CAN SPAM, CAPTCHA and ACT UP.[citation needed] The clothing company French Connection began referring to itself as fcuk, standing for "French Connection United Kingdom". The company then created T-shirts and several advertising campaigns that exploit the acronym's similarity to the taboo word "fuck".

The US Department of Defense's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is known for developing contrived acronyms to name projects, including RESURRECT, NIRVANA, and DUDE. In July 2010, Wired magazine reported that DARPA announced programs to "... transform biology from a descriptive to a predictive field of science" named BATMAN and ROBIN for "Biochronicity and Temporal Mechanisms Arising in Nature" and "Robustness of Biologically-Inspired Networks",[83] a reference to the Batman and Robin comic-book superheroes.

The short-form names of clinical trials and other scientific studies constitute a large class of acronyms that includes many contrived examples, as well as many with a partial rather than complete correspondence of letters to expansion components. These trials tend to have full names that are accurately descriptive of what the trial is about but are thus also too long to serve practically as names within the syntax of a sentence, so a short name is also developed, which can serve as a syntactically useful handle and also provide at least a degree of mnemonic reminder as to the full name. Examples widely known in medicine include the ALLHAT trial (Antihypertensive and Lipid-Lowering Treatment to Prevent Heart Attack Trial) and the CHARM trial (Candesartan in Heart Failure: Assessment of Reduction in Mortality and Morbidity). The fact that RAS syndrome is often involved, as well as that the letters often don't entirely match, have sometimes been pointed out by annoyed researchers preoccupied by the idea that because the archetypal form of acronyms originated with one-to-one letter matching, there must be some impropriety in their ever deviating from that form. However, the raison d'être of clinical trial acronyms, as with gene and protein symbols, is simply to have a syntactically usable and easily recalled short name to complement the long name that is often syntactically unusable and not memorized. It is useful for the short name to give a reminder of the long name, which supports the reasonable censure of "cutesy" examples that provide little to no hint of it. But beyond that reasonably close correspondence, the short name's chief utility is in functioning cognitively as a name, rather than being a cryptic and forgettable string, albeit faithful to the matching of letters. However, other reasonable critiques have been (1) that it is irresponsible to mention trial acronyms without explaining them at least once by providing the long names somewhere in the document,[84] and (2) that the proliferation of trial acronyms has resulted in ambiguity, such as 3 different trials all called ASPECT, which is another reason why failing to explain them somewhere in the document is irresponsible in scientific communication.[84] At least one study has evaluated the citation impact and other traits of acronym-named trials compared with others,[85] finding both good aspects (mnemonic help, name recall) and potential flaws (connotatively driven bias).[85]

Some acronyms are chosen deliberately to avoid a name considered undesirable: For example, Verliebt in Berlin (ViB), a German telenovela, was first intended to be Alles nur aus Liebe (All for Love), but was changed to avoid the resultant acronym ANAL. Likewise, the Computer Literacy and Internet Technology qualification is known as CLaIT,[86] rather than CLIT. In Canada, the Canadian Conservative Reform Alliance (Party) was quickly renamed to the "Canadian Reform Conservative Alliance" when its opponents pointed out that its initials spelled CCRAP (pronounced "see crap"). Two Irish Institutes of Technology (Galway and Tralee) chose different acronyms from other institutes when they were upgraded from Regional Technical colleges. Tralee RTC became the Institute of Technology Tralee (ITT), as opposed to Tralee Institute of Technology (TIT). Galway RTC became Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT), as opposed to Galway Institute of Technology (GIT). The charity sports organization Team in Training is known as "TNT" and not "TIT". Technological Institute of Textile & Sciences, however, is still known as "TITS". George Mason University was planning to name their law school the "Antonin Scalia School of Law" (ASSOL) in honor of the late Antonin Scalia, only to change it to the "Antonin Scalia Law School" later.[87]

Macronyms/nested acronyms

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A macronym, or nested acronym, is an acronym in which one or more letters stand for acronyms (or abbreviations) themselves. The word "macronym" is a portmanteau of "macro-" and "acronym".

Some examples of macronyms are:

Some macronyms can be multiply nested: the second-order acronym points to another one further down a hierarchy. In an informal competition run by the magazine New Scientist, a fully documented specimen was discovered that may be the most deeply nested of all: RARS is the "Regional ATOVS Retransmission Service"; ATOVS is "Advanced TOVS"; TOVS is "TIROS operational vertical sounder"; and TIROS is "Television infrared observational satellite".[88] Fully expanded, "RARS" might thus become "Regional Advanced Television Infrared Observational Satellite Operational Vertical Sounder Retransmission Service", which would produce the much more unwieldy acronym "RATIOSOVSRS".

Another example is VITAL, which expands to "VHDL Initiative Towards ASIC Libraries" (a total of 15 words when fully expanded).

However, to say that "RARS" stands directly for that string of words, or can be interchanged with it in syntax (in the same way that "CHF" can be usefully interchanged with "congestive heart failure"), is a prescriptive misapprehension rather than a linguistically accurate description; the true nature of such a term is closer to anacronymic than to being interchangeable like simpler acronyms are. The latter are fully reducible in an attempt to "spell everything out and avoid all abbreviations", but the former are irreducible in that respect; they can be annotated with parenthetical explanations, but they cannot be eliminated from speech or writing in any useful or practical way. Just as the words laser and radar function as words in syntax and cognition without a need to focus on their acronymic origins, terms such as "RARS" and "CHA2DS2–VASc score" are irreducible in natural language; if they are purged, the form of language that is left may conform to some imposed rule, but it cannot be described as remaining natural. Similarly, protein and gene nomenclature, which uses symbols extensively, includes such terms as the name of the NACHT protein domain, which reflects the symbols of some proteins that contain the domain – NAIP (NLR family apoptosis inhibitor protein), C2TA (major histocompatibility complex class II transcription activator), HET-E (incompatibility locus protein from Podospora anserine), and TP1 (telomerase-associated protein) – but is not syntactically reducible to them. The name is thus itself more symbol than acronym, and its expansion cannot replace it while preserving its function in natural syntax as a name within a clause clearly parsable by human readers or listeners.

Recursive acronyms

A special type of macronym, the recursive acronym, has letters whose expansion refers back to the macronym itself. One of the earliest examples appears in The Hacker's Dictionary as MUNG, which stands for "MUNG Until No Good".

Some examples of recursive acronyms are:

Non-English languages

Specific languages

Chinese

In English language discussions of languages with syllabic or logographic writing systems (such as Chinese, Japanese, and Korean), "acronyms" describe the short forms that take selected characters from a multi-character word.

For example, in Chinese, "university" (大學/大学, literally "great learning") is usually abbreviated simply as ("great") when used with the name of the institute. So "Peking University" (北京大学) is commonly shortened to 北大 (lit. "north-great") by also only taking the first character of Peking, the "northern capital" (北京; Beijing). In some cases, however, other characters than the first can be selected. For example, the local short form of "Hong Kong University" (香港大學) uses "Kong" (港大) rather than "Hong".

There are also cases where some longer phrases are abbreviated drastically, especially in Chinese politics, where proper nouns were initially translated from Soviet Leninist terms. For instance, the full name of China's highest ruling council, the Politburo Standing Committee (PSC), is "Standing Committee of the Central Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China" (中国共产党中央政治局常务委员会). The term then reduced the "Communist Party of China" part of its name through acronyms, then the "Standing Committee" part, again through acronyms, to create "中共中央政治局常委". Alternatively, it omitted the "Communist Party" part altogether, creating "Politburo Standing Committee" (政治局常委会), and eventually just "Standing Committee" (常委会). The PSC's members full designations are "Member of the Standing Committee of the Central Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China" (中国共产党中央政治局常务委员会委员); this was eventually drastically reduced to simply Changwei (常委), with the term Ruchang (入常) used increasingly for officials destined for a future seat on the PSC. In another example, the word "全国人民代表大会" (National People's Congress) can be broken into four parts: "全国" = "the whole nation", "人民" = "people", "代表" = "representatives", "大会" = "conference". Yet, in its short form "人大" (literally "man/people big"), only the first characters from the second and the fourth parts are selected; the first part ("全国") and the third part ("代表") are simply ignored. In describing such abbreviations, the term initialism is inapplicable.[original research?]

Many proper nouns become shorter and shorter over time. For example, the CCTV New Year's Gala, whose full name is literally read as "China Central Television Spring Festival Joint Celebration Evening Gala" (中国中央电视台春节联欢晚会) was first shortened to "Spring Festival Joint Celebration Evening Gala" (春节联欢晚会), but eventually referred to as simply Chunwan (春晚). Along the same vein, CCTV or Zhongguo Zhongyang Dianshi Tai (中国中央电视台) was reduced to Yangshi (央视) in the mid-2000s.

Korean

Many aspects of academics in Korea follow similar acronym patterns as Chinese, owing to the two languages' commonalities, like using the word for "big" or "great" i.e. dae (), to refer to universities (대학; daehak, literally "great learning" although "big school" is an acceptable alternate). They can be interpreted similarly to American university appellations such as, "UPenn" or "Texas Tech."

Some acronyms are shortened forms of the school's name, like how Hongik University (홍익대학교, Hongik Daehakgyo) is shortened to Hongdae (홍대, "Hong, the big [school]" or "Hong-U") Other acronyms can refer to the university's main subject, e.g. Korea National University of Education (한국교원대학교, Hanguk Gyowon Daehakgyo) is shortened to Gyowondae (교원대, "Big Ed." or "Ed.-U"). Other schools use a Koreanized version of their English acronym. The Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (한국과학기술원, Hanguk Gwahak Gisulwon) is referred to as KAIST (카이스트, Kaiseuteu) in both English and Korean. The 3 most prestigious schools in Korea are known as SKY (스카이, seukai), combining the first letter of their English names (Seoul National, Korea, and Yonsei Universities). In addition, the College Scholastic Ability Test (대학수학능력시험, Daehak Suhang Neungryeok Siheom) is shortened to Suneung (수능, "S.A.").

Japanese

The Japanese language makes extensive use of abbreviations, but only some of these are acronyms.

Chinese-based words (Sino-Japanese vocabulary) uses similar acronym formation to Chinese, like Tōdai (東大) for Tōkyō Daigaku (東京大学, Tokyo University). In some cases alternative pronunciations are used, as in Saikyō for 埼京, from Saitama + Tōkyo (埼玉+東京), rather than Sai.

Non-Chinese foreign borrowings (gairaigo) are instead frequently abbreviated as clipped compounds, rather than acronyms, using several initial sounds. This is visible in katakana transcriptions of foreign words, but is also found with native words (written in hiragana). For example, the Pokémon media franchise's name originally stood for "pocket monsters" (ポケット·モンスター [po-ke-tto-mon-su-tā] → ポケモン), which is still the long-form of the name in Japanese, and "wāpuro" stands for "word processor" (ワード·プロセッサー [wā-do-pu-ro-se-ssā]→ ワープロ).

German

To a greater degree than English does, German tends toward acronyms that use initial syllables rather than initial single letters, although it uses many of the latter type as well. Some examples of the syllabic type are Gestapo rather than GSP (for Geheime Staatspolizei, 'Secret State Police'); Flak rather than FAK (for Fliegerabwehrkanone, anti-aircraft gun); Kripo rather than KP (for Kriminalpolizei, detective division police). The extension of such contraction to a pervasive or whimsical degree has been mockingly labeled Aküfi (for Abkürzungsfimmel, strange habit of abbreviating). Examples of Aküfi include Vokuhila (for vorne kurz, hinten lang, short in the front, long in the back, i.e., a mullet) and the mocking of Adolf Hitler's title as Gröfaz (Größter Feldherr aller Zeiten, "Greatest General of all Times").

Hebrew

It is common to take more than just one initial letter from each of the words composing the acronym; regardless of this, the abbreviation sign gershayim ⟨״⟩ is always written between the second-last and last letters of the non-inflected form of the acronym, even if by this it separates letters of the same original word. Examples (keep in mind Hebrew reads right-to-left): ארה״ב (for ארצות הברית, the United States); ברה״מ (for ברית המועצות, the Soviet Union); ראשל״צ (for ראשון לציון, Rishon LeZion); ביה״ס (for בית הספר, the school). An example that takes only the initial letters from its component words is צה״ל (Tzahal, for צבא הגנה לישראל, Israel Defense Forces). In inflected forms the abbreviation sign gershayim remains between the second-last and last letters of the non-inflected form of the acronym (e.g. "report", singular: דו״ח, plural: דו״חות; "squad commander", masculine: מ״כ, feminine: מ״כית).

Indonesian

There is also a widespread use of acronyms in Indonesia in every aspect of social life. For example, the Golkar political party stands for "Partai Golongan Karya", Monas stands for "Monumen Nasional" (National Monument), the Angkot public transport stands for "Angkutan Kota" (city public transportation), warnet stands for "warung internet" (internet cafe), and many others. Some acronyms are considered formal (or officially adopted), while many more are considered informal, slang or colloquial.

The capital's metropolitan area (Jakarta and its surrounding satellite regions), Jabodetabek, is another infamous acronym. This stands for "Jakarta-Bogor-Depok-Tangerang-Bekasi". Many highways are also named by the acronym method; e.g. Jalan Tol (Toll Road) Jagorawi (Jakarta-Bogor-Ciawi) and Purbaleunyi (Purwakarta-Bandung-Cileunyi), Joglo Semar (Jogja-solo-semarang).

In some languages, especially those that use certain alphabets, many acronyms come from the governmental use, particularly in the military and law enforcement services. The Indonesian military (TNI – Tentara Nasional Indonesia) and Indonesian police (POLRI – Kepolisian Republik Indonesia) are infamous for heavy acronyms use. Examples include the Kopassus (Komando Pasukan Khusus; Special Forces Command), Kopaska (Komando Pasukan Katak; Frogmen Command), Kodim (Komando Distrik Militer; Military District Command – one of the Indonesian army's administrative divisions), Serka (Sersan Kepala; Head Sergeant), Akmil (Akademi Militer; Military Academy – in Magelang) and many other terms regarding ranks, units, divisions, procedures, etc.

Malay

Although not as common as in Indonesian, a number of Malay words are formed by merging two words, such as tadika from "taman didikan kanak-kanak" (kindergarten) and pawagam from "panggung wayang gambar." This, however, has been less prevalent in the modern era, in contrary to Indonesian. It is still often for names such as organisation names, among the most famous being MARA from Majlis Amanah Rakyat (People's Trust Council,) a government agency in Malaysia.

Some acronyms are developed from the Jawi (Malay in Arabic script) spelling of the name and may not reflect its Latin counterpart such as PAS from Parti Islam Se-Malaysia (Malaysian Islamic Party) which originated from the Jawi acronym ڤاس from ڤرتي إسلام سمليسيا, with the same pronunciation, since the first letter of the word "Islam" in Jawi uses the letter Aleph, which is pronounced like the letter A when in such position as in the acronym.

Rules in writing initialisms in Malay differ based on its script. In its Latin form, the initialism would be spelt much like in English, using capitals written without any spacing, such as TNB for Tenaga Nasional Berhad.

In Jawi, however, the way initialisms are different depending on the source language. For Malay initialisms, the initial Jawi letters would be written separated by a period such as .د.ب.ڤ for ديوان بهاس دان ڤوستاک.[89] If the initialism is from a different language, however, it would be written by transliterating each letter from the original language, such as عيم.سي.عيم.سي. for MCMC, or .الفا.ڤي.ثيتا for Α.Π.Θ.[90]

Russian

Acronyms that use parts of words (not necessarily syllables) are commonplace in Russian as well, e.g. Газпром (Gazprom), for Газовая промышленность (Gazovaya promyshlennost, "gas industry"). There are also initialisms, such as СМИ (SMI, for средства массовой информации sredstva massovoy informatsii, "means of mass informing", i.e. ГУЛаг (GULag) combines two initials and three letters of the final word: it stands for Главное управление лагерей (Glavnoe upravlenie lagerey, "Chief Administration of Camps").

Historically, "OTMA" was an acronym sometimes used by the daughters of Emperor Nicholas II of Russia and his consort, Alexandra Feodorovna, as a group nickname for themselves, built from the first letter of each girl's name in the order of their births: "Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia".

Swahili

In Swahili, acronyms are common for naming organizations such as "TUKI", which stands for Taasisi ya Uchunguzi wa Kiswahili (the Institute for Swahili Research). Multiple initial letters (often the initial syllable of words) are often drawn together, as seen more in some languages than others.

Vietnamese

In Vietnamese, which has an abundance of compound words, initialisms are very commonly used for both proper and common nouns. Examples include TP.HCM (Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh, Ho Chi Minh City), THPT (trung học phổ thông, high school), CLB (câu lạc bộ, club), CSDL (cơ sở dữ liệu, database), NXB (nhà xuất bản, publisher), ÔBACE (ông bà anh chị em, a general form of address), and CTTĐVN (các Thánh tử đạo Việt Nam, Vietnamese Martyrs). Longer examples include CHXHCNVN (Cộng hòa Xã hội chủ nghĩa Việt Nam, Socialist Republic of Vietnam) and MTDTGPMNVN (Mặt trận Dân tộc Giải phóng miền Nam Việt Nam, Viet Cong). Long initialisms have become widespread in legal contexts in Vietnam, for example TTLT-VKSNDTC-TANDTC.[91] It is also common for a writer to coin an ad hoc initialism for repeated use in an article.

Each letter in an initialism corresponds to one morpheme, that is, one syllable. When the first letter of a syllable has a tone mark or other diacritic, the diacritic may be omitted from the initialism, for example ĐNA or ĐNÁ for Đông Nam Á (Southeast Asia) and LMCA or LMCÂ for Liên minh châu Âu (European Union). The letter "Ư" is often replaced by "W" in initialisms to avoid confusion with "U", for example UBTWMTTQVN or UBTƯMTTQVN for Ủy ban Trung ương Mặt trận Tổ quốc Việt Nam (Central Committee of the Vietnamese Fatherland Front).

Initialisms are purely a written convenience, being pronounced the same way as their expansions. As the names of many Vietnamese letters are disyllabic, it would be less convenient to pronounce an initialism by its individual letters. Acronyms pronounced as words are rare in Vietnamese, occurring when an acronym itself is borrowed from another language. Examples include SIĐA (pronounced [s̪i˧ ˀɗaː˧]), a respelling of the French acronym SIDA (AIDS); VOA (pronounced [vwaː˧]), a literal reading of the English initialism for Voice of America; and NASA (pronounced [naː˧ zaː˧]), borrowed directly from the English acronym.

As in Chinese, many compound words can be shortened to the first syllable when forming a longer word. For example, the term Việt Cộng is derived from the first syllables of "Việt Nam" (Vietnam) and "Cộng sản" (communist). This mechanism is limited to Sino-Vietnamese vocabulary. Unlike with Chinese, such clipped compounds are considered to be portmanteau words or blend words rather than acronyms or initialisms, because the Vietnamese alphabet still requires each component word to be written as more than one character.

General grammatical considerations

Declension

In languages where nouns are declined, various methods are used. An example is Finnish, where a colon is used to separate inflection from the letters:

The process above is similar to the way that hyphens are used for clarity in English when prefixes are added to acronyms: thus pre-NATO policy (rather than preNATO).

Lenition

In languages such as Scottish Gaelic and Irish, where lenition (initial consonant mutation) is commonplace, acronyms must also be modified in situations where case and context dictate it. In the case of Scottish Gaelic, a lower-case h is often added after the initial consonant; for example, BBC Scotland in the genitive case would be written as BhBC Alba, with the acronym pronounced VBC. Likewise, the Gaelic acronym for telebhisean 'television' is TBh, pronounced TV, as in English.

See also

Explanatory notes

  1. ^ This change was also applied to other languages, with Poulet Frit Kentucky becoming PFK in French Canada.

References

  1. ^ a b c d "acronym, n." Oxford English Dictionary (Third ed.). Oxford University Press. December 2011. Archived from the original on January 22, 2020. Retrieved January 22, 2020.

    acronym, n.

    Pronunciation: Brit. /ˈakrənɪm/, U.S. /ˈækrəˌnɪm/
    Origin: Formed within English, by compounding; modelled on a German lexical item.
    Etymons: acro- comb. form, -onym comb. form.
    Etymology: < acro- comb. form + -onym comb. form, after German Akronym (1921 or earlier).
    Originally U.S.
    1. A group of initial letters used as an abbreviation for a name or expression, each letter or part being pronounced separately; an initialism (such as ATM, TLS).
    In the O.E.D. the term initialism is used for this phenomenon. (See sense 2 for O.E.D. use of the word.)

    • 1940 W. Muir & E. Muir tr. L. Feuchtwanger Paris Gaz. iii. xlvii. 518     Pee-gee-enn. It's an acronym [Ger. Akronym], that's what it is. That's what they call words made up of initials.
    • 1947 T. M. Pearce in Word Study May 8/2     The acronym DDT..trips pleasantly on the tongue and is already a household byword.
    • 1959 Rotarian May 43/1     DDD, an acronym that sounds more like a cattle brand.
    • 1975 Jet 24 July 9/1     The puns on the acronym, 'CIA', were spawned by recent disclosures about the intelligence agency.
    • 1985 C. Jencks Mod. Movements in Archit. (ed. 2) i. 75     Called by the acronym SCSD (Schools Construction System Development).
    • 2008 Atlantic Monthly June 104/2     The acronym TSS—Tout Sauf Sarkozy ('Anything But Sarkozy').

    2. A word formed from the initial letters of other words or (occasionally) from the initial parts of syllables taken from other words, the whole being pronounced as a single word (such as NATO, RADA).

    • 1943 Amer. Notes & Queries Feb. 167/1     Words made up of the initial letters or syllables of other words..I have seen..called by the name acronym.
    • 1947 Word Study 6(title)     Acronym Talk, or 'Tomorrow's English'.
    • 1950 S. Potter Our Lang. 163     Acronyms or telescoped names like nabisco from National Biscuit Company.
    • 1959 Times 1 Sept. 22/3     New words which are constructed out of initial letters are called, I understand, acronyms.
    • 1961 Electronics 21 Apr. 51/2     Colidar, an acronym from coherent light detecting and ranging.
    • 1976 P. R. Hutt in IBA Techn. Rev. ix. 4/2     The author hit on the idea of the name 'oracle'..and it was not long before it was made into an acronym for 'Optional Reception of Announcements by Coded Line Electronics'.
    • 2009 N.Y. Times (National ed.) 16 Apr. a2/2     Turning tea into an acronym for Taxed Enough Already, demonstrators were expected to attend more than 750 rallies to protest government spending.
  2. ^ "Acronym". The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary. Merriam-Webster Inc. January 22, 2020. Archived from the original on January 22, 2020. Retrieved January 22, 2020.

    Some people feel strongly that acronym should only be used for terms like NATO, which is pronounced as a single word, and that initialism should be used if the individual letters are all pronounced distinctly, as with FBI. Our research shows that acronym is commonly used to refer to both types of abbreviations.

  3. ^ a b Brinton, Laurel J.; Brinton, Donna M. (2010). The Linguistic Structure of Modern English. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company. p. 110. ISBN 9789027288240. Retrieved April 3, 2022.
  4. ^ "acronym". en.wiktionary.org. Archived from the original on January 17, 2020. Retrieved January 28, 2020.
  5. ^ "Akronym". Brockhaus Handbuch des Wissens in vier Bänden (in German). Vol. 1. Leipzig: F. A. Brockhaus AG. 1921. p. 37. Archived from the original on April 5, 2020. Retrieved February 22, 2020. Agfa (Aktien-Gesellschaft für Anilinfabrikation).
  6. ^ Feuchtwanger, Lion (1940). "Chapter 47: Beasts of Prey". Paris Gazette [Exil] (in German). Translated by Muir, Willa; Muir, Edwin. New York: Viking Press. pp. 665–66. ISBN 1135370109.

    His first glance at the Paris German News told Wiesener that this new paper was nothing like the old P.G.. "They can call it the P.G.N. if they like", he thought, "but that's the only difference. Pee-gee-enn; what's the word for words like that, made out of initials? My memory is beginning to fail me. Just the other day there was a technical expression I couldn't remember. I must be growing old. "P.G. or P.G.N., it's six of one and half a dozen of the other.... Pee-gee-enn. It's an acronym, that's what it is. That's what they call words made up of initials. So I remember it after all; that's at least something.

  7. ^ Brinton, Laurel J.; Brinton, Donna M. (2010). The Linguistic Structure of Modern English. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company. p. 109. ISBN 9789027288240. Retrieved April 3, 2022.
  8. ^ "Acronym". The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary. Merriam-Webster Inc. January 22, 2020. Archived from the original on January 22, 2020. Retrieved January 22, 2020.

    acronym noun
    ac·​ro·​nym | \ˈa-krə-ˌnim\
    Definition of acronym
    : a word (such as NATO, radar, or laser) formed from the initial letter or letters of each of the successive parts or major parts of a compound term
    also : an abbreviation (such as FBI) formed from initial letters : initialism

  9. ^ "Acronym". Dictionary.com. January 22, 2020. Archived from the original on January 22, 2020. Retrieved January 22, 2020. 2. a set of initials representing a name, organization, or the like, with each letter pronounced separately; an initialism.
  10. ^ a b c "Acronym". The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (Fifth ed.). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. November 2011. Archived from the original on January 22, 2020. Retrieved January 22, 2020.

    ac·ro·nym (ăkrə-nĭm′)
    n.
    1. A word formed by combining the initial letters of a multipart name, such as NATO from North Atlantic Treaty Organization or by combining the initial letters or parts of a series of words, such as radar from radio detecting and ranging.
    2. Usage Problem An initialism.
    [acr(o)- + -onym.]
    ac′ro·nymic, a·crony·mous (ə-krŏn′ə-məs) adj.
    Usage Note: In strict usage, the term acronym refers to a word made from the initial letters or parts of other words, such as sonar from so(und) na(vigation and) r(anging). The distinguishing feature of an acronym is that it is pronounced as if it were a single word, in the manner of NATO and NASA. Acronyms are often distinguished from initialisms like FBI and NIH, whose individual letters are pronounced as separate syllables. While observing this distinction has some virtue in precision, it may be lost on many people, for whom the term acronym refers to both kinds of abbreviations.

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    acronym
    /ˈækrənɪm/ ('say' 'akruhnim)
    noun 1. a word formed from the initial letters of a sequence of words, as radar (from radio detection and ranging) or ANZAC (from Australian and New Zealand Army Corps). Compare initialism.
    2. an initialism.
    [acro- + -(o)nym; modelled on synonym]

  12. ^ "acronym". Collins COBUILD Advanced English Dictionary. HarperCollins Publishers. Archived from the original on February 8, 2020. Retrieved January 22, 2020. An acronym is a word composed of the first letters of the words in a phrase, especially when this is used as a name. An example of an acronym is 'NATO', which is made up of the first letters of the 'North Atlantic Treaty Organization'.
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    ac·ro·nym /ˈakrəˌnim/ ▸ n. an abbreviation formed from the initial letters of other words and pronounced as a word (e.g. ASCII, NASA).
    origin 1940s: from Greek akron 'end, tip' + onoma 'name,' on the pattern of homonym.

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    acronyms  A number of commentators (as Copperud 1970, Janis 1984, Howard 1984) believe that acronyms can be differentiated from other abbreviations in being pronounceable as words. Dictionaries, however, do not make this distinction because writers in general do not:

    "The powder metallurgy industry has officially adopted the acronym 'P/M Parts'"—Precision Metal Molding, January 1966.
    "Users of the term acronym make no distinction between those pronounced as words ... and those pronounced as a series of characters" —Jean Praninskas, Trade Name Creation, 1968.
    "It is not J.C.B.'s fault that its name, let alone its acronym, is not a household word among European scholars"—Times Literary Supp. 5 February 1970.
    "... the confusion in the Pentagon about abbreviations and acronyms—words formed from the first letters of other words"—Bernard Weinraub, N.Y. Times, 11 December 1978.

    Pyles & Algeo 1970 divide acronyms into "initialisms", which consists of initial letters pronounced with the letter names, and "word acronyms", which are pronounced as words. Initialism, an older word than acronym, seems to be too little known to the general public to serve as the customary term standing in contrast with acronym in a narrow sense.

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    ac·ro·nym ˈa-krə-ˌnim n [acr- + -onym] (1943) : a word (as NATO, radar, or snafu) formed from the initial letter or letters of each of the successive parts or major parts of a compound term— ac·ro·nym·ic ˌa-krə-ˈni-mik adjac·ro·nym·i·c·al·ly -mi-k(ə-)lē adv

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    ac·ro·nym ˈa-krə-ˌnim n [acr- + -onym] (1943) : a word (such as NATO, radar, or laser) formed from the initial letter or letters of each of the successive parts or major parts of a compound term; also : an abbreviation (such as FBI) formed from initial letters : initialismac·ro·nym·ic ˌa-krə-ˈni-mik adjac·ro·nym·i·c·al·ly -mi-k(ə-)lē adv

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