a small starlike symbol (*), used in writing and printing as a reference mark or to indicate omission, doubtful matter, etc.
Linguisticsthe figure of a star (*) used to mark utterance that would be considered ungrammatical or otherwise unacceptable by native speakers of a language, as in* I enjoy to ski.
LinguisticsHistorical Ling. the figure of a star (*) used to mark a hypothetical or reconstructed form that is not attested in a text or inscription.
something in the shape of a star or asterisk.
to mark with an asterisk.
Greek asterískos, diminutive of asté̄rstar
1350–1400; Middle English
While asterisk is usually said as
(as′tə risk),USA pronunciation with the final syllable preceding the
(k),USA pronunciation a metathesized pronunciation is also heard, in which the
(s)USA pronunciation and
(k)USA pronunciation change places producing
(as′tə riks).USA pronunciation This pronunciation, resulting in part from analogy with plural forms like kicks and sticks, can sometimes lead to a false analysis of
(as′tə riks)USA pronunciation as a plural pronunciation, with a corresponding singular
(as′tə rik).USA pronunciation The metathesized pronunciation, although occasionally heard among educated speakers, is usually considered nonstandard, as is the pronunciation with no
(s)USA pronunciation in the final syllable.