Ancillary Definition & Meaning | Britannica Dictionary | everything know

When you’re thinking about a word, do you just think of the definition? Or do you also consider the ancillary meaning of that word? Ancillary meaning is a bit more complicated than the dictionary definition. It refers to all the other things in life that have to do with that particular word. For example, if you think about the word “orange,” you might know its color, but you might also know what it symbolizes (like sweetness or warmth). Britannica explains ancillary meaning as follows: “Ancillary meaning is additional information or significance attached to a term, often by analogy with other terms with similar ancillary meanings. In contrast, primary meaning is the intrinsic and specific nature of a term.” So, when you’re looking up a word in the dictionary, be sure to also consider its ancillary meaning. This will help you understand it better and give you more insight into how to use it in your writing.

Ancillary Definition

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definition and meaning:

Ancillary means supplementary. It may be used to describe an activity, a person, or a thing that is in support of, or related to, the main purpose of something else. Ancillary personnel are hired to help with the day-to-day running of a business. The adjective ancilliary can refer to something that is helpful and not central to the purpose or nature of what it supports.

Meaning of Ancillary

Ancillary is a term that refers to anything that is supplemental, additional, or supplementary to something else. It can also refer to an accessory or auxiliary body part. The ancient Greeks and Romans used the term ancilliary ship to describe ships that were not warships but were instead used for transport, trade, and other purposes. In modern usage, ancillary often describes services that are provided in addition to those offered by a primary organization or institution. An example of this would be an airline providing air travel in addition to flights operated by the airline’s parent company.

How are they Used?

Ancillary definition and meaning relate to a subsidiary or minor matter or aspect of something else. Ancillary may also refer to an accessory, concession, or favor granted as part of a bargain. In law, an ancillary proceeding is one that is not the main event but is connected with it, such as a motion for summary judgment.

What are the Different Types of Ancillary Definitions and Meanings?

The word “ancillary” has a variety of meanings, depending on the context in which it is used.

Ancillary means supplementary, related to but not essential to the main purpose or point of something. For example, an ancillary room in a hospital is one that is not necessary for providing medical care but is instead used for storage or other purposes. Similarly, an ancillary function is a secondary activity or task that support the main purpose of a organization or system.

Ancillary can also refer to something that aids in carrying out a task, like an accessory piece of equipment. Finally, an ancilliary economy refers to a situation in which small businesses and individual citizens produce goods and services that are not essential for the functioning of society as a whole but nonetheless contribute significant value.


The ancillary definition of a word is its meaning that is related to, but not exclusively derived from, the primary meaning of the word. Words can have ancillary definitions in different contexts; for instance, the ancillary definition of justice may be “the quality or state of being just” in one context, while in another it might refer to “a legal system providing fair and impartial treatment to all citizens” (Merriam-Webster). Additionally, ancillary definitions can arise out of the way a word is used. For example, the ancillary definition of cute might be “attractive in a sweet and charming way” (Oxford Dictionaries), while the ancillary definition of cute when used in reference to animals might be “mildly offensive because exhibiting features that are typically considered attractive in children or animals but which are usually considered unseemly or embarrassing on adults” (The Free Dictionary).

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