Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know


[sa-vahnt, sav-uh nt; French sa-vahn] /sæˈvɑnt, ˈsæv ənt; French saˈvɑ̃/
noun, plural savants
[sa-vahnts, sav-uh nts; French sa-vahn] /sæˈvɑnts, ˈsæv ənts; French saˈvɑ̃/ (Show IPA)
a person of profound or extensive learning; learned scholar.
Origin of savant
1710-20; < French: man of learning, scholar, old present participle of savoir to know ≪ Latin sapere to be wise; see sapient Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for savant
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Thus, with the selfishness of an epicure and the tastes of a savant, he surrounded himself with the most luxurious elegance.

    Mabel's Mistake Ann S. Stephens
  • No savant now denies the transmittable taint of insanity and consumption.

    Mizora: A Prophecy Mary E. Bradley
  • Thus, perhaps, we may name ten poet-gamesters to one savant or philosopher who deserved the title or infamy.

  • Here the savant seeing a hobby-horse near, caught him and jumped on.

    White Lies Charles Reade
  • In the evening the gentleman, being a savant, goes to the Wister Society, and afterwards plays a snug rubber at a neighbour's.

  • This persistency had struck the savant, and he asked a mutual friend to introduce him.

    My Double Life Sarah Bernhardt
  • I am only too glad to please and gratify the student and the savant.

    Remarks Bill Nye
British Dictionary definitions for savant


/ˈsævənt; French savɑ̃/
a man of great learning; sage
Derived Forms
savante, noun:feminine
Word Origin
C18: from French, from savoir to know, from Latin sapere to be wise; see sapient
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 savant

"one eminent for learning," 1719, from French savant "a learned man," noun use of adjective savant "learned, knowing," former present participle of savoir "to know," from Vulgar Latin *sapere, from Latin sapere "be wise" (see sapient).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for savant

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for savant

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for savant