[ pol-ee-glot ]
/ ˈpɒl iˌglɒt /


able to speak or write several languages; multilingual.
containing, composed of, or written in several languages: a polyglot Bible.


a mixture or confusion of languages.
a person who speaks, writes, or reads a number of languages.
a book, especially a Bible, containing the same text in several languages.

Nearby words

  1. polygenic inheritance,
  2. polygenism,
  3. polygenous,
  4. polyglandular,
  5. polyglandular deficiency syndrome,
  6. polygnotus,
  7. polygon,
  8. polygonaceous,
  9. polygonum,
  10. polygraph

Origin of polyglot

1635–45; < Medieval Latin polyglōttus < Greek polýglōttos many-tongued. See poly-, -glot

Related formspol·y·glot·ism, noun

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

Examples from the Web for polyglot

British Dictionary definitions for polyglot


/ (ˈpɒlɪˌɡlɒt) /


having a command of many languages
written in, composed of, or containing many languages


a person with a command of many languages
a book, esp a Bible, containing several versions of the same text written in various languages
a mixture or confusion of languages
Derived Formspolyglotism or polyglottism, noun

Word Origin for polyglot

C17: from Greek poluglōttos literally: many-tongued, from poly- + glōtta tongue

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 polyglot



1650s, from Greek polyglottos "speaking many languages," literally "many-tongued," from polys "many" (see poly-) + glotta, Attic variant of glossa "language," literally "tongue" (see gloss (n.2)). As a noun from 1640s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper