[suh-fis-ti-key-shuh n]


sophisticated character, ideas, tastes, or ways as the result of education, worldly experience, etc.: the sophistication of the wealthy.
change from the natural character or simplicity, or the resulting condition.
complexity, as in design or organization.
impairment or debasement, as of purity or genuineness.
the use of sophistry; a sophism, quibble, or fallacious argument.

Origin of sophistication

1350–1400; Middle English < Medieval Latin sophisticātiōn- (stem of sophisticātiō), equivalent to sophisticāt(us) (see sophisticate) + -iōn- -ion
Related formsan·ti·so·phis·ti·ca·tion, nounhy·per·so·phis·ti·ca·tion, nouno·ver·so·phis·ti·ca·tion, nounself-so·phis·ti·ca·tion, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for sophistication

finesse, composure, tact, poise, elegance, refinement, worldliness, urbanity

Examples from the Web for sophistication

Contemporary Examples of sophistication

Historical Examples of sophistication

  • But he was resolved to use his best skill to disarm her sophistication.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • With all her sophistication, Tillie was vastly ignorant of life.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • She chattered with the childish artlessness that at times veiled her sophistication.

    The Highgrader

    William MacLeod Raine

  • It will perhaps not do to say that it is altogether a matter of sophistication.

  • Her expression, her voice, her lack of sophistication, all had the limpidity of water.

    The Dust Flower

    Basil King

Word Origin and History for sophistication

early 15c., "use of sophistry; fallacious argument intended to mislead; adulteration; an adulterated or adulterating substance," from Medieval Latin sophisticationem (nominative sophisticatio), noun of action from past participle stem of sophisticare "adulterate, cheat quibble," from Latin sophisticus "of sophists," from Greek sophistikos "of or pertaining to a sophist," from sophistes "a wise man, master, teacher" (see sophist). Meaning "wordly wisdom, refinement, discrimination" is attested from 1850.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper