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polysyllabic

[pol-ee-si-lab-ik]
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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 pol·y·syl·lab·i·cal.

Origin of polysyllabic

1650–60; < Medieval Latin polysyllab(us) of many syllables (< Greek polysýllabos) + -ic. See poly-, syllabic
Related formspol·y·syl·lab·i·cal·ly, adverbhy·per·pol·y·syl·lab·ic, adjectivehy·per·pol·y·syl·lab·i·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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</p>

    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


British Dictionary definitions for polysyllabic

polysyllabic

adjective
  1. consisting of more than two syllables
Derived Formspolysyllabically, 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

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

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