Latest Acronyms

Numerous examples of acronyms can be found in everyday life. An acronym is an abbreviation formed from the first letters or syllables of several words. We present some examples and special cases of acronyms.

Acronym: Examples and Definition

The term acronym can be derived from the Greek. ‘ákros’ can be translated as point or edge, ‘ónoma’ as name. So it’s about the marginal letters of words that form the abbreviation. According to the linguist Hadumod Bussmann, there are four different types of acronyms, for each of which numerous examples can be found.

  • On the one hand there are acronyms that are spelled out and pronounced with an emphasis on the end, for example ‘EDV’, ‘LKW’ or ‘WM’.
  • In addition, there are acronyms whose letter combination takes on a syllabic value and which is stressed at the beginning, for example ‘ UNO’ or ‘ NATO ‘.
  • Examples can also be found for acronyms whose initials result in a phonetic, i.e. easily pronounceable, word. This includes the word ‘Aids’, which stands for ‘Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome’.
  • Mixed forms of the formation of the word with initials and syllables are, for example, ‘Azubi’ or ‘BAföG’. These words are also known as mixed abbreviations.
  • The various forms of acronyms are particularly common in internet and chat language. Examples are ‘LOL’ (laughing out loud), ‘LMAO'(laughing my ass off), ‘CU’ (see you) or ‘ROFL’ (rolling on the floor laughing).

Special forms of acronyms

In addition to the four classic forms of acronyms, there are some special forms. Most terms can be assigned to several forms and are therefore not clearly distinguishable from each other.

  • Backronyms are words that are only subsequently assigned an additional meaning from their individual letters . These include ‘puma’ (try Adidas) or ‘marriage’ (errare humanum est- to err is human).
  • The syllable abbreviation is a word that is made up of the initial syllables of several words. Here, for example, the words ‘Trafo’ (transformer) or ‘KiTa’ (day care center) count.
  • Apronyms are abbreviations that result in an already existing word. The word ‘ELSTER’ actually describes a bird, but the abbreviation is used for ‘Electronic Tax Return’.
  • Recursive abbreviations are common, especially in the technical field . For example, ‘GNU’ is a free operating system; the acronym stands for ‘GNU’s Not Unix’, since the ‘GNU’ operating system is very similar to the ‘Unix’ operating system. So, in this type of acronym, part of the abbreviation describes the acronym itself.

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