[ pan-op-tik ]
See synonyms for panoptic on
  1. permitting the viewing of all parts or elements: a panoptic stain used in microscopy; a panoptic aerial photograph of an enemy missile base.

  2. considering all parts or elements; all inclusive: a panoptic criticism of modern poetry.

Origin of panoptic

1820–30; <Greek panópt(ēs) all-seeing + -ic. See pan-, optic
  • Often pan·op·ti·cal .

Other words from panoptic

  • pan·op·ti·cal·ly, adverb

Words Nearby panoptic Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use panoptic in a sentence

  • I suppose the town has a modern jail now—perhaps even with panoptic galleries!

    The Charm of Ireland | Burton Egbert Stevenson

British Dictionary definitions for panoptic



/ (pænˈɒptɪk) /

  1. taking in all parts, aspects, etc, in a single view; all-embracing: a panoptic survey

Origin of panoptic

C19: from Greek panoptēs seeing everything, from pan- + optos visible

Derived forms of panoptic

  • panoptically, adverb

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