What’s the Word #24 – Abecedarian

March 23, 2016 at 12:02 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

The word I chose to share today is abecedarian (ey-bee-see-dair-ee-uh n).  Abecedarian can be used as either a noun or an adjective.

As a noun abecedarian is defined:

  1. One who teaches, studies, or is just learning the alphabet.
  2. beginner in any field of learning.


  • The abecedarian of the ESL class often became frustrated with her students because they wouldn’t pay attention.
  • Abecedarians who pass themselves off as “experts” are quite common on ‘social media’ platforms.

As an adjective, abecedarian is defined:

  1. Of or relating to the alphabet.
  2. Arranged in alphabetical order.
  3. Rudimentary; elementary; primary.


  • The abecedarian book made it easier to learn the new language.
  • Once his boss told him that the files were in abecedarian order, Ernie found the folder he was seeking immediately.
  • Ernie’s abecedarian knowledge of mechanics made Technical School difficult for the first few weeks.

The origins of abecedarian come from medieval Latin abecedarius; ‘alphabetical’ (from the first four letters of the Latin alphabet + -arius).

Abecedarian is an archaic word seldom used today in spoken English. You might still see it used infrequently in its written form.


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