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[pleth-er-uh] /ˈplɛθ ər ə/
overabundance; excess:
a plethora of advice and a paucity of assistance.
Pathology Archaic. a morbid condition due to excess of red corpuscles in the blood or increase in the quantity of blood.
Origin of plethora
1535-45; < New Latin < Greek plēthṓra fullness
Can be confused
dearth, plethora. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for plethora
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • That would be worse, Lawrence, for the damp might cause a plethora.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete Jacques Casanova de Seingalt
  • Man produces gestalts, and cuts form out of the plethora of nothingness.

    Warm Robert Sheckley
  • Your present plethora of acquirements will soon cure itself.

    Medical Essays Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.
  • The intestines of our mountains are gorged with precious ore to plethora.

    Roughing It Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
  • Taxation is necessary just as blood-letting is necessary in plethora.

    Comic Arithmetic Anonymous
British Dictionary definitions for plethora


superfluity or excess; overabundance
(pathol, obsolete) a condition caused by dilation of superficial blood vessels, characterized esp by a reddish face
Derived Forms
plethoric (plɛˈθɒrɪk) adjective
plethorically, adverb
Word Origin
C16: via Medieval Latin from Greek plēthōrē fullness, from plēthein to grow full
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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Contemporary definitions for plethora

excess; overabundance

Word Origin

Greek 'fullness''s 21st Century Lexicon
Copyright © 2003-2014, LLC
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Word Origin and History for plethora

1540s, a medical word for "excess of body fluid," from Late Latin plethora, from Greek plethore "fullness," from plethein "be full" (see pleio-). Figurative meaning "too-muchness, overfullness in any respect" is first recorded 1700. Related: Plethoric.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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plethora in Medicine

plethora pleth·o·ra (plěth'ər-ə)

  1. An excess of blood in the circulatory system or in one organ or area.

  2. An excess of any of the body fluids.

ple·thor'ic (plě-thôr'ĭk) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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