Eponym Examples


An eponym is the person or place after which something or someone else is named. It is the "original" that inspired what came after. Eponym literally means "named after."

Many things in our culture bear the name of the person who invented them. For example the store "Wal-Mart" is named for Sam Walton, the man who founded the retail giant. While we don't often think about it, many common items were named after someone who had a hand in their invention.

Examples of Eponym:

Mason Jar is named for the man who invented them-John Landis Mason

The Dewey Decimal System that is used in libraries is named after its inventor-Melvin Dewey

If your John Hancock is needed, it refers to your signature. John Hancock is one of the signers of the American Declaration of Independence who wrote his name rather large compared to his peers.

Atlas was a figure in Greek mythology who holds the world on his shoulders. The term atlas now refers to a book of maps.

If you refer to someone as having a Peter Pan complex, it means that he is childish and unwilling to "grow up." This term is derived from the popular story of Peter Pan, a boy who never grew up.

If you call someone a "Grinch" it means that he or she doesn't like Christmas or feel the Christmas spirit. It comes from the character The Grinch who ruined Christmas in the story.

A cardigan is named after the 7th Earl of Cardigan, whose troops wore a similar garment into battle.

Reaganomics is a term that combines the name of Ronald Reagan with the term Economics.

Napoleon complex is used to refer to someone who thinks they are larger or more important than reality. It refers to Napoleon, who was a short man who attempted to conquer the world.

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Literary Terms Examples