9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[in-sig-nee-uh] /ɪnˈsɪg ni ə/
noun, formally a plural of, insigne but usually used as a singular with plural, insignia or insignias.
a badge or distinguishing mark of office or honor:
a military insignia.
a distinguishing mark or sign of anything:
an insignia of mourning.
Also, insigne.
Origin of insignia
1640-50; < Latin, plural of insigne mark, badge, noun use of neuter of insignis distinguished (by a mark); see in-2, sign
Usage note
Insignia, originally the plural of Latin insigne, began to be used as a singular in the 18th century, and the plural insignias appeared shortly thereafter. All uses—insignia as a singular or plural and insignias as a plural—are fully standard. The singular insigne still occurs, but insignia is more common.


[in-sig-nee] /ɪnˈsɪg ni/
singular of insignia.
2. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for insignia
  • Chaplains may still wear lapel pins with crosses or other insignia.
  • Dazzled by the prospect of being part of a group, fans eagerly wear the group's insignia or team colors.
  • The lander was named after the bald eagle in the mission insignia.
  • It is a neatly done booklet about the rebel movement, including displays of all its insignia.
  • Each rotation adds the names of its dead, under insignia.
  • In this custom the high-steward appears, for some reason, to have usurped the insignia of the king.
  • He stood and watched as everybody clapped in bewilderment, and a flushed floral insignia rose on his cheeks.
  • White taxis with the sentry lock insignia are sanctioned.
  • The rank insignia for a corporal is two chevrons pointing downward with an arc.
British Dictionary definitions for insignia


noun (pl) -nias, -nia
a badge or emblem of membership, office, or dignity
a distinguishing sign or mark
Also called (rare) insigne (ɪnˈsɪɡniː)
Word Origin
C17: from Latin: marks, badges, from insignis distinguished by a mark, prominent, from in-² + signum mark
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for insignia

1640s, from Latin insignia, neuter plural of insigne "badge, mark," from in- "in" (see in- (2)) + signum "mark" (see sign). Singular is insigne.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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