Try Our Apps
Dictionary.com

follow Dictionary.com

2017 Word of the Year

polysyllabic

[pol-ee-si-lab-ik] /ˌpɒl i sɪˈlæb ɪk/
adjective
1.
consisting of several, especially four or more, syllables, as a word.
2.
characterized by such words, as a language, piece of writing, etc.
Sometimes, polysyllabical.
Origin of polysyllabic
1650-1660
1650-60; < Medieval Latin polysyllab(us) of many syllables (< Greek polysýllabos) + -ic. See poly-, syllabic
Related forms
polysyllabically, adverb
hyperpolysyllabic, adjective
hyperpolysyllabically, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for polysyllabic
Historical Examples
  • "You haven't told me about the polysyllabic young man," she reminded.

    Good Indian B. M. Bower
  • Hence the polysyllabic, and the descriptive character of the language, so composite in its aspect and in its forms.

  • Swinburne's polysyllabic rage showed the force of the current he was trying to stem.

    Whitman John Burroughs
  • The languages differ—the Turanian, like the Oceanic and the American, being inflected and polysyllabic.

    Man and His Migrations

    R. G. (Robert Gordon) Latham
  • And by the way, I met that polysyllabic cowboy again—and I discovered that, on the whole, my estimate was incorrect.

    Good Indian B. M. Bower
  • The commonest variation of the type occurs in the first thesis, which may be polysyllabic.

  • Owing to these licences, and to the introduction of polysyllabic theses, the rhythm of the verse sometimes becomes very heavy.

  • With regard to trisyllabic and polysyllabic words the remarks on pp. 176–7 are to be compared.

  • He alluded to tyrannical obstinacy—unimaginative autocracy—intolerable domination—and other polysyllabic enormities.

  • He departed from my view, a perplexing and polysyllabic problem, claiming for himself a useless and preposterous purity.

British Dictionary definitions for polysyllabic

polysyllabic

/ˌpɒlɪsɪˈlæbɪk/
adjective
1.
consisting of more than two syllables
Derived Forms
polysyllabically, 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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for polysyllabic
adj.

1650s (implied in polysyllabical), from Medieval Latin polysyllabicus, from Greek polysyllabikos; see poly- + syllabic.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for polysyllabic

Word Value for polysyllabic

24
28
Scrabble Words With Friends