1. A common Name, distinction from a proper name. A common Name, or appellative, stands for a whole class, genus, or species of beings, or for universal ideas. Thus, tree is the name of all plants of a particular class; plant and vegetable are names of things that grow out of the earth. A proper name, on the other hand, stands for a single thing; as, Rome, Washington, lake Erie.
2. An appellation or title; a descriptive name. God chosen it for one of his appellatives to be the Defender of them. (Jer. Taylor)
Origin: L. Appelativum, sc. Nomen.