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[sahy-uh-liz-uh m] /ˈsaɪ əˌlɪz əm/
superficial knowledge.
Origin of sciolism
1810-20; < Late Latin sciol(us) one who knows little (diminutive of scius knowing; see conscious, -ole1) + -ism
Related forms
sciolist, noun
sciolistic, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for sciolism
Historical Examples
  • This is scholarship; the secondary information that has been popular is sciolism.

  • Such an age of sciolism and scholasticism may possibly once more get the better of the literary world.

    Phaedrus Plato
  • Few things are as distressing as the sciolism of a second-rate English editor of a classic.

    An American at Oxford John Corbin
British Dictionary definitions for sciolism


(rare) the practice of opinionating on subjects of which one has only superficial knowledge
Derived Forms
sciolist, noun
sciolistic, adjective
Word Origin
C19: from Late Latin sciolus someone with a smattering of knowledge, from Latin scīre to know
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 sciolism

"a show of knowledge," 1798; see sciolist + -ism.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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