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.

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

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British Dictionary definitions for polyglot



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