intellect

[ in-tl-ekt ]
/ ˈɪn tlˌɛkt /

noun

the power or faculty of the mind by which one knows or understands, as distinguished from that by which one feels and that by which one wills; the understanding; the faculty of thinking and acquiring knowledge.
capacity for thinking and acquiring knowledge, especially of a high or complex order; mental capacity.
a particular mind or intelligence, especially of a high order.
a person possessing a great capacity for thought and knowledge.
minds collectively, as of a number of persons or the persons themselves.

Nearby words

  1. integrator,
  2. integrity,
  3. integument,
  4. integumentary,
  5. intel,
  6. intellection,
  7. intellective,
  8. intellectronics,
  9. intellectual,
  10. intellectual property

Origin of intellect

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin intellēctus, equivalent to intelleg(ere) to understand + -tus suffix of v. action; see intelligent

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for intellect


British Dictionary definitions for intellect

intellect

/ (ˈɪntɪˌlɛkt) /

noun

the capacity for understanding, thinking, and reasoning, as distinct from feeling or wishing
a mind or intelligence, esp a brilliant onehis intellect is wasted on that job
informal a person possessing a brilliant mind; brain
those possessing the greatest mental powerthe intellect of a nation
Derived Formsintellective, adjectiveintellectively, adverb

Word Origin for intellect

C14: from Latin intellectus comprehension, intellect, from intellegere to understand; see intelligence

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 intellect

intellect

n.

late 14c. (but little used before 16c.), from Old French intellecte "intellectual capacity" (13c.), and directly from Latin intellectus "discernment, a perception, understanding," from noun use of past participle of intelligere "to understand, discern" (see intelligence).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper