1. A document issued by an educational institution, such as a university, testifying that the recipient has earned a degree or has successfully completed a particular course of study.
2. A certificate conferring a privilege or honor.
3. An official document or charter.
[Latin diplōma, letter of introduction, from Greek, document, folded paper, from diploos, double; see dwo- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 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.