A Word A Day : Mundane

Saturday, 24th May 2008 : Today's Word is ...


( Adjective )

Pronunciation : mun-dáyn


1. relating to matters of this world

2. relating to or characteristic of the earth or of human life on earth

3. found in the ordinary course of events

4. of or belonging to or characteristic of this earth as distinguished from heaven


15th century - Via French - late Latin mundanus - Latin mundus - world


earthbound, earthen, earthly, earthy, secular, tellurian, telluric, temporal, terrene, terrestrial, worldly, ordinary, commonplace


exciting, extraordinary, heavenly, supernatural, wonderful

Contextual Examples:

• Creativity is piercing the mundane to find the marvelous.

• Even in the upper and damp region I procured very few, excepting some minute Diptera and Hymenoptera, mostly of common mundane forms.

• My day was filled with mundane chores. I mowed the lawn, did the laundry and fed the dog.

• Dee's job was so mundane that she sometimes had trouble remembering whether she was at work or asleep.

• The monk's thoughts were far removed from mundane concerns. He was contemplating all the fun he was going to have in heaven.

Related Words:

mundanely : Adverb

mundaneness : Noun

mundanity : Noun


In science fiction and in fandom, a mundane is a person who does not belong to a particular group, according to the members of that group. According to the Mundane Manifesto, mundane science fiction is science fiction which does not make use of interstellar travel or other common tropes of the genre.

The Mundanes were an early-1980s Rhode Island-based New Wave band featuring future They Might Be Giants member John Linnell.

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