• synonyms


[ mon-uh-ling-gwuh l or, Canadian, -ling-gyoo-uh l ]
/ ˌmɒn əˈlɪŋ gwəl or, Canadian, -ˈlɪŋ gyu əl /


knowing or able to use only one language; monoglot.
spoken or written in only one language.


a monolingual person.

Nearby words

monola, monolater, monolatry, monolayer, monoline insurer, monolingual, monolith, monolithic, monolocular, monologic, monologue

Origin of monolingual

First recorded in 1950–55; mono- + lingual
Related formsmon·o·lin·gual·ism, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for monolingual

  • Chang stressed that her detention was far worse for her monolingual Korean parents than for herself.

    Despite Obama’s Order, Deportation Looms for an Immigrant Dreamer|Allison Yarrow|June 23, 2012|DAILY BEAST
  • The time when the intellectual affairs of America could be conducted on a monolingual basis is over.

    Instigations|Ezra Pound

British Dictionary definitions for monolingual


/ (ˌmɒnəʊˈlɪŋɡwəl) /


knowing or expressed in only one language


a monolingual person
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