Etymology
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nominal (adj.)

mid-15c., nominalle, "pertaining to nouns," from Latin nominalis "pertaining to a name or names," from nomen (genitive nominis) "name," which is cognate with Old English nama (from PIE root *no-men- "name"). Meaning "of the nature of names" (in distinction to things) is from 1610s. Meaning "being so in name only" is recorded from 1620s.

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Definitions of nominal
1
nominal (adj.)
insignificantly small; a matter of form only (`tokenish' is informal);
the fee was nominal
Synonyms: token / tokenish
nominal (adj.)
relating to or constituting or bearing or giving a name;
a nominal lists of priests
the Russian system of nominal brevity
taxable males as revealed by the nominal rolls
nominal (adj.)
pertaining to a noun or to a word group that functions as a noun;
nominal phrase
nominal (adj.)
of, relating to, or characteristic of an amount that is not adjusted for inflation;
nominal interest rates
the nominal GDP
nominal (adj.)
named; bearing the name of a specific person;
Synonyms: nominative
nominal (adj.)
existing in name only;
the nominal (or titular) head of his party
Synonyms: titular
2
nominal (n.)
a phrase that can function as the subject or object of a verb;
Synonyms: noun phrase / nominal phrase
From wordnet.princeton.edu