—adj. 1. belonging equally to, or shared alike by, two or more or all in question: common property; common interests. 2. pertaining or belonging equally to an entire community, nation, or culture; public: a common language or history; a common water-supply system. 3. joint; united: a common defense. 4. widespread; general; ordinary: common knowledge. 5. of frequent occurrence; usual; familiar: a common event; a common mistake. 6. hackneyed; trite.
7. of mediocre or inferior quality; mean; low: a rough-textured suit of the most common fabric. 8. coarse; vulgar: common manners. 9. lacking rank, station, distinction, etc.; unexceptional; ordinary: a common soldier; common people; the common man; a common thief. 10. Dial.friendly; sociable; unaffected.
11. Anat.forming or formed by two or more parts or branches: the common carotid arteries. 12. Pros.(of a syllable) able to be considered as either long or short.
13. Gram. a. not belonging to an inflectional paradigm; fulfilling different functions that in some languages require different inflected forms: English nouns are in the common case whether used as subject or object. b. constituting one of two genders of a language, esp. a gender comprising nouns that were formerly masculine or feminine: Swedish nouns are either common or neuter. c. noting a word that may refer to either a male or a female: French élève has common gender. English lacks a common gender pronoun in the third person singular. d. (of a noun) belonging to the common gender.
14. Math.bearing a similar relation to two or more entities.
15. of, pertaining to, or being common stock: common shares.
—n. 1. Often, commons.Chiefly New England.a tract of land owned or used jointly by the residents of a community, usually a central square or park in a city or town.
2. Law.the right or liberty, in common with other persons, to take profit from the land or waters of another, as by pasturing animals on another's land (com'mon of pas'turage) or fishing in another's waters (com'mon of pis'cary). 3. commons,(used with a sing. or pl. v.) a. the commonalty; the nonruling class.
b. the body of people not of noble birth or not ennobled, as represented in England by the House of Commons.
c. (cap.) the representatives of this body.
d. (cap.) the House of Commons.
4. commons, a. (used with a sing. v.) a large dining room, esp. at a university or college.
b. (usually used with a pl. v.)Brit.food provided in such a dining room.
c. (usually used with a pl. v.) food or provisions for any group.
5. (sometimes cap.)Eccles. a. an office or form of service used on a festival of a particular kind.
b. the ordinary of the Mass, esp. those parts sung by the choir.
c. the part of the missal and breviary containing Masses and offices of those saints assigned to them.
6. Obs. a. the community or public.
b. the common people.
7. in common, in joint possession or use; shared equally: They have a love of adventure in common.