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signifying

[sig-nuh-fahy-ing] /ˈsɪg nəˌfaɪ ɪŋ/
noun
1.
sounding1 (def 4)
Origin
1955-1960
1955-60; signify + -ing1
Related forms
unsignifying, adjective

signify

[sig-nuh-fahy] /ˈsɪg nəˌfaɪ/
verb (used with object), signified, signifying.
1.
to make known by signs, speech, or action.
2.
to be a sign of; mean; portend.
verb (used without object), signified, signifying.
3.
to be of importance or consequence.
Origin
1200-50; Middle English signifien < Old French signifier < Latin significāre to make a sign, indicate, mention, denote. See sign, -ify
Related forms
signifiable, adjective
unsignifiable, adjective
Synonyms
1. signal, express, indicate. 2. represent, indicate, denote, betoken, imply.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for signifying
  • Other similar stone structures were objects of veneration, signifying places of power or the abode of spirits.
  • Signs signifying how far away major cities in the world are.
  • The bulky microphone soon took on a symbolic role, signifying the urgency and excitement of radio itself.
  • Astronomers spot earliest light signifying a star's doom.
  • Paper maps with ridges signifying roads are not ideal either, because they cannot convey enough information.
  • The blink is a physical manifestation signifying that one has taken in what was being communicated.
  • The symmetry of private semantic narrative against public a-signifying topology.
  • It all smacks of student-grade stuff: full of portent, without signifying much.
  • But the precise definition of the term leadership can be at times opaque, signifying many things, not all uniform.
  • The technology becomes pretty images, signifying nothing.
British Dictionary definitions for signifying

signify

/ˈsɪɡnɪˌfaɪ/
verb (when transitive, may take a clause as object) -fies, -fying, -fied
1.
(transitive) to indicate, show, or suggest
2.
(transitive) to imply or portend the clouds signified the coming storm
3.
(transitive) to stand as a symbol, sign, etc (for)
4.
(intransitive) (informal) to be significant or important
Derived Forms
signifiable, adjective
signifier, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French signifier, from Latin significāre, from signum a sign, mark + facere to make
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 signifying

signify

v.

late 13c., "be a sign of, indicate, mean," from Old French signifier (12c.), from Latin significare "to make signs, show by signs, point out, express; mean, signify; foreshadow, portend," from significus (adj.), from signum "sign" (see sign (n.)) + root of facere "to make" (see factitious). Intransitive sense of "to be of importance" is attested from 1660s. Meaning "engage in mock-hostile banter" is American English black slang first recorded 1932.

...'signifying,' which in Harlemese means making a series of oblique remarks apparently addressed to no one in particular, but unmistakable in intention in such a close-knit circle. ["Down Beat," March 7, 1968]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for signifying

signify

verb

To make provocative comments in a gamelike manner; snap, sound: any black kid who has stood in a school yard or on a street corner engaging in the mock-hostile banter that blacks call ''signifying''/ In Chicago you still get people doing the old-style rhyming; that's called signifying (1932+ Black)


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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