Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of native
Meaning of native by Wiktionary Dictionary



    From Old French natif, from Latin nativus, from natus, ‘birth’ .


    • ( RP ) IPA: /ˈneɪtɪv/


    native ( comparative more native, superlative most native )

    1. Belonging to one by birth .
      This is my native land .
      English is not my native language .
      I need a volunteer native New Yorker for my next joke…
    2. Characteristic of or relating to people inhabiting a region from prehistoric times .
      What are now called ‘Native Americans’ used to be called Indians .
      The native peoples of Australia are called aborigines .
    3. ( chiefly North America, also Native ) Of or relating to North American Indians or Aboriginal people .
    4. Characteristic of or existing by virtue of geographic origin .
      Many native artists studied abroad .
    5. ( biology, of a species ) Which occurs of its own accord in a given locality, to be contrasted with a species introduced by man .
      The naturalized Norway maple often outcompetes the native North American sugar maple .
    6. ( computing, of software ) Pertaining to the system or architecture in question .
      This is a native back-end to gather the latest news feeds .
      The native integer size is sixteen bits .
    7. ( 鉱物学 ) Occurring naturally in its pure or uncombined form; native aluminium, native salt .


    Derived terms


    native ( plural: natives )

    1. A person who is native to a place ( literal or metaphoric ) .
      She is a regular Wiki* native .
    2. ( chiefly North America, also Native ) A North American Indian or Aboriginal person .
    3. Sometimes used pejoratively against indigenous peoples by their colonizers .
      Some natives must have stolen our cattle .

    Usage notes

    ( North American ) Native was adopted as an ethnonym when Indian dropped out of favour in formal use, due to its association with Christopher Columbus mistaking North America for India. More precise names are American Indian, Native American, or Native Canadian .

    In Canada, specific terms for Aboriginal peoples are preferable in formal writing: First Nations ( adj. ), Inuit, and Metis. Indian is also used in some contexts, but not appropriate in others .


Explanation of native by Wordnet Dictionary


    1. belonging to one by birth

    2. my native land
      one's native language
    3. characteristic of or existing by virtue of geographic origin

    4. the native North American sugar maple
      many native artists studied abroad
    5. characteristic of or relating to people inhabiting a region from the beginning

    6. native Americans
    7. as found in nature in the elemental form

    8. native copper
    1. indigenous plants and animals

    2. an indigenous person who was born in a particular place

    3. the art of the natives of the northwest coast
    4. a person born in a particular place or country

    5. he is a native of Brazil

    Definition of native by GCIDE Dictionary


    1. Native ( nātĭv ), a. [F. natif, L. nativus, fr. nasci, p. p. natus. See Nation, and cf. Naïve, Neif a serf.]
      1. Arising by birth; having an origin; born. [Obs.]

      Anaximander's opinion is, that the gods are native, rising and vanishing again in long periods of times. Cudworth.

      2. Of or pertaining to one's birth; natal; belonging to the place or the circumstances in which one is born; -- opposed to foreign; as, “native land, language, color, etc.”

      3. Born in the region in which one lives; as, “a native inhabitant, race”; grown or originating in the region where used or sold; not foreign or imported; as, “native oysters, or strawberries”. In the latter sense, synonymous with domestic.

      4. Original; constituting the original substance of anything; as, “native dust”. Milton.

      5. Conferred by birth; derived from origin; born with one; inherent; inborn; not acquired; as, “native genius, cheerfulness, wit, simplicity, rights, intelligence, etc. Having the same meaning as congenital, but typically used for positive qualities, whereas congenital may be used for negative qualities. See also congenital”

      Courage is native to you. Jowett ( Thucyd. ).

      6. Naturally related; cognate; connected ( with ). [R.]

      the head is not more native to the heart, . . .

      Than is the throne of Denmark to thy father. Shak.

      7. ( Min. ) Found in nature uncombined with other elements; as, “native silver, copper, gold”. Found in nature; not artificial; “native sodium chloride”.

      Native American party. See under American, a. -- Native bear ( Zool. ), the koala. -- Native bread ( Bot. ), a large underground fungus, of Australia ( Mylitta australis ), somewhat resembling a truffle, but much larger. -- Native devil. ( Zool. ) Same as Tasmanian devil, under Devil. -- Native hen ( Zool. ), an Australian rail ( Tribonyx Mortierii ). -- Native pheasant. ( Zool. ) See Leipoa. -- Native rabbit ( Zool. ), an Australian marsupial ( Perameles lagotis ) resembling a rabbit in size and form. -- Native sloth ( Zool. ), the koala. -- Native thrush ( Zool. ), an Australian singing bird ( Pachycephala olivacea ); -- called also thickhead. -- Native turkey ( Zool. ), the Australian bustard ( Choriotis australis ); -- called also bebilya.

      Syn. -- Natural; natal; original; congenital. -- Native, Natural, Natal. natural refers to the nature of a thing, or that which springs therefrom; native, to one's birth or origin; as, a native country, language, etc.; natal, to the circumstances of one's birth; as, a natal day, or star. Native talent is that which is inborn; natural talent is that which springs from the structure of the mind. Native eloquence is the result of strong innate emotion; natural eloquence is opposed to that which is studied or artificial.

    2. Native n.
      1. One who, or that which, is born in a place or country referred to; a denizen by birth; an animal, a fruit, or vegetable, produced in a certain region; as, “a native of France; the natives are restless”.

      2. ( Stock Breeding ) Any of the live stock found in a region, as distinguished from such as belong to pure and distinct imported breeds. [U.S.]