n. pl. com·men·tar·ies
a. Explanation or interpretation in the form of a series of comments or observations: "The Spectator was a widely appreciated model of urbane social commentary mingled with popularized philosophy" (Leo Damrosch).
b. An ongoing series of spoken remarks, especially during a television or radio broadcast of an event: Two retired players did the commentary for the game.
2. An apt explanation or illustration: a scandal that is a sad commentary on national politics.
3. often commentaries
a. An expository treatise or series of annotations; an exegesis: a commentary on Plato's Republic; biblical commentaries.
b. A narrative of historical events of which one has personal experience: Caesar's commentaries on the war in Gaul.
com′men·tari·al (-târē-əl) adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.