AskDefine | Define popular

Dictionary Definition

popular adj
1 regarded with great favor, approval, or affection especially by the general public; "a popular tourist attraction"; "a popular girl"; "cabbage patch dolls are no longer popular" [ant: unpopular]
2 carried on by or for the people (or citizens) at large; "the popular vote"; "popular representation"; "institutions of popular government"
3 representing or appealing to or adapted for the benefit of the people at large; "democratic art forms"; "a democratic or popular movement"; "popular thought"; "popular science"; "popular fiction" [syn: democratic]
4 comprehensible to the general public; "written for the popular press in plain nontechnical language" [syn: plain]
5 (of music or art) new and of general appeal (especially among young people) [syn: pop]

User Contributed Dictionary



popularis, from populus people: compare French populaire. See people


  • /ˈpɑpjulɝ/ (GA)


  1. Of or pertaining to the common people, or to the whole body of the people, as distinguished from a select portion; as, the popular voice; popular elections.
    popular states - Francis Bacon
    So the popular vote inclines. - John Milton
    The commonly held in popular estimation are greatest at a distance. - John Henry Newman
  2. Suitable to common people; easy to be comprehended; not abstruse; familiar; plain.
    Homilies are plain popular instructions. - Richard Hooker
  3. Adapted to the means of the common people; possessed or obtainable by the many; hence, cheap; common; ordinary; inferior; as, popular prices; popular amusements.
    The smallest figs, called popular figs, . . . are, of all others, the basest and of least account. - Holland?.
  4. Beloved or approved by the people; pleasing to people in general, or to many people; as, a popular preacher; a popular law; a popular administration.
  5. Devoted to the common people; studious of the favor of the populace.
    Such popular humanity is treason. - Joseph Addison
  6. Prevailing among the people; epidemic; as, a popular disease. - Samuel Johnson

Derived terms


Of or pertaining to the common people
beloved or approved by the people


  • Webster 1913}}



Extensive Definition

Popular may refer to:
In music, it may refer to:
  • Pop!ular, a song by Australian singer-songwriter Darren Hayes
  • "Popular," a song by Nada Surf on their album High/Low
  • "Popular," a song in Wicked musical

See also

popular in French: Populaire
popular in Japanese: ポピュラー
popular in Portuguese: Popular
popular in Simple English: Popular

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Babbittish, Philistine, accepted, accessible, acclaimed, accustomed, admired, admitted, adored, advocated, all the rage, all the thing, amateur, applauded, approved, associated, average, backed, beloved, besetting, bourgeois, campy, celebrated, cherished, civil, collective, collectivistic, common, commonplace, communal, communistic, commutual, conformable, congregational, conjoint, consuetudinary, conventional, cooperative, coveted, cried up, current, customary, darling, dear, dearly beloved, desired, distinguished, dominant, epidemic, established, esteemed, everyday, fabled, famed, familiar, famous, far-famed, far-heard, fashionable, favored, favorite, general, generally accepted, habitual, held dear, high-camp, highly touted, hip, homely, homespun, honored, hoped-for, hot, household, in, in common, in demand, in fashion, in favor, in good odor, in style, in vogue, inexpensive, joint, kitschy, laic, laical, lay, leading, legendary, longed-for, loved, low, low-camp, low-priced, marked, mod, modern, much acclaimed, mutual, mythical, new, newfashioned, nonclerical, nonecclesiastical, nonministerial, nonordained, nonpastoral, nonreligious, normal, normative, notable, noted, notorious, obtaining, occupy, of mark, of note, ordinary, pandemic, people, pet, plebeian, pop, populate, precious, predominant, predominating, preferred, prescribed, prescriptive, prevailing, prevalent, prized, prominent, public, rampant, reasonable, received, reciprocal, recommended, regnant, regular, regulation, reigning, renowned, revered, rife, routine, ruling, running, secular, secularist, secularistic, self-governing, set, simplified, smart, social, socialistic, societal, standard, stereotyped, stock, stylish, supported, talked-about, talked-of, temporal, tenant, time-honored, traditional, treasured, trendy, understandable, universal, up-to-date, up-to-datish, up-to-the-minute, usual, vernacular, vulgar, wanted, well-beloved, well-known, well-liked, well-thought-of, widespread, wished-for, wonted
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