bilingualism

[ bahy-ling-gwuh-liz-uh m or, Canadian, -ling-gyoo-uh- ]
/ baɪˈlɪŋ gwəˌlɪz əm or, Canadian, -ˈlɪŋ gyu ə- /

noun

the ability to speak two languages fluently.
the habitual use of two languages.
Canadian. a government-supported program encouraging all citizens to acquire a knowledge of both English and French.
Also bi·lin·gual·i·ty [bahy-ling-gwal-i-tee or, Canadian, -ling-gyoo-al-] /ˌbaɪ lɪŋˈgwæl ɪ ti or, Canadian, -lɪŋ gyuˈæl-/.

Origin of bilingualism

First recorded in 1870–75; bilingual + -ism
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for bilingualism

  • Associated words: bilingual, diglot, bilingualism, bilinguist.

    Putnam's Word Book|Louis A. Flemming
  • Instead of threatening national unity, bilingualism was its necessary condition.

    Belgium|Emile Cammaerts
  • Bilingualism must thus be considered as a solution of the language question in Belgium in the fifteenth century.

    Belgium|Emile Cammaerts