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[puh-dan-tik] /pəˈdæn tɪk/
ostentatious in one's learning.
overly concerned with minute details or formalisms, especially in teaching.
Also, Archaic, pedantical.
Origin of pedantic
First recorded in 1590-1600; pedant + -ic
Related forms
pedantically, adverb
pedanticalness, noun
semipedantic, adjective
semipedantical, adjective
semipedantically, adverb
unpedantic, adjective
unpedantical, adjective
2. didactic, doctrinaire. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for pedantic
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • "The facts are as follows," replied Tibby, who had at times a pedantic lucidity.

    Howards End E. M. Forster
  • Anything that savors of the pedantic is to be strictly avoided.

    College Teaching Paul Klapper
  • Suffice to say that Bach is pedantic when compared to Mozart, and Beethoven unbeautiful.

    Old Fogy James Huneker
  • "He related to us his whole life," rejoined she, in a pedantic tone.

    Samuel Brohl & Company Victor Cherbuliez
  • In his pedantic way he began to tell her the story of Jeanne, so far as he knew it.

    The Rough Road

    William John Locke
British Dictionary definitions for pedantic


of, relating to, or characterized by pedantry
Derived Forms
pedantically, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for pedantic

formed in English c.1600, from pedant + -ic. The French equivalent is pédantesque. Perhaps first attested in John Donne's "Sunne Rising," where he bids the morning sun let his love and him linger in bed, telling it, "Sawcy pedantique wretch, goe chide Late schooleboyes." Related: Pedantical (1580s); pedantically.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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