How Do You Spell Original? – English Spelling Dictionary

Spelling of Original: Original is spelled o-r-i-g-i-n-a-l.

Definition of Original: Original describes something or someone that was first or preceding all others. Someone or something that is original is not derived from something else. Instead, it is fresh and different from previous practices or ideas.

Something or someone that is an original is the first form or model from which others are made, developed, or derived. It may also refer to something that is not a copy, not a print or reproduction of some other work. An original may also refer to a person with a unique or unusual personality, a character.

Pronunciation of Original: Original is pronounced uh-ridge-ih-nul.

How to Use Original in a Sentence

What does original mean? Original can function as both a noun and an adjective, both of which are common.

As an adjective, original describes someone or something as being first before all others and not like anything preceding it.

how to spell originalFor example,

  • Our professor said that our group had come up with such an original idea for the art project that no one’s ever done it before.
  • The Bible has been translated into English from its original form.

As a noun, an original is the first of something, from which other similar things were modeled or created; an original is an authentic work that has been created or composed firsthand, which is often copied by others.

For example,

  • I made copies for the group and I kept the original for myself.
  • This is not a copy of Van Gogh’s The Starry Night, it is the original.

Finally, an original may be used to refer to a person or being with a very creative, unusual, or curious personality that is unlike any other.

For example,

  • Cher was a true original for her time.
  • He doesn’t try to fit in or be like others; he is an original.

The adverb, originally, is formed by adding “-ly” to the end of original. It describes an action that was done or a thought that occurred in the first place or primarily, before others.

For example,

  • Originally, I had thought he was lying, but now I don’t think so.
  • We had wanted to move to the beach originally but opted against it after we found out more information.

Phrases & Idioms That Use Original

In the original: in the language used by the original writer; the original work after which others were modeled.

History & Etymology of Original

According to Merriam-Webster’s, the word original was first used in the 14th century.

Original comes from Middle English via Old French. Originally, the word comes from Latin originalis from origio, origin, meaning source.

Synonyms for Original

The following words are synonymous with original when it is used to mean coming before all others in time or order:

  • Earliest
  • Foremost
  • Inaugural
  • Initial
  • First
  • Premier

When it’s used to describe someone who is very creative and inventive, the following words can be substituted for original:

  • Clever
  • Imaginative
  • Ingenious
  • Innovative
  • Inventive
  • Creative

The following words can replace original when it’s used to describe something that has not been previously known or experienced before:

  • Fresh
  • Novel
  • New
  • Strange
  • Unaccustomed
  • Unfamiliar
  • Unknown
  • Unprecedented

Outside Examples of Original

  • “…But Lin has brought an original tone and voice as a composer. (Benj) Pasek and (Justin) Paul are writing good tunes. Honestly, I’ve always tried to do new things. All my life, my creed has been that musical theater can embrace anything.” – Chicago Tribune
  • Huff Post Korea took PRI’s awkward question one step further, twisting it into one of nationalist anguish: If the translation modified the original this much, can Korean literature even claim any of the glory? – LA Times


Original can function as a noun and an adjective. It refers to someone or something that is new, first, innovative, and not copied or previously known.