SKIP TO CONTENT

polyglot

Ni hao! Comment allez-vous? Estoy bien, gracias. Sayōnara! If you understood everything you just read, you’re probably a polyglot — a person who understands multiple languages.

There are thousands of languages spoken in the world, but you don’t need to know them all to be a polyglot. The –glot comes from the Greek word for “tongue,” and the prefix poly- means “more than one,” so if you speak two or more languages, you’re technically a polyglot. Well done! Polyglot can also be used as an adjective, like describing "a polyglot neighborhood" full of people from many different cultures or the "polyglot crowd at the Olympic games."

Definitions of polyglot
  1. noun
    a person who speaks more than one language
    synonyms: linguist
    see moresee less
    examples:
    Joseph Greenberg
    United States linguist who studied the historical relations among 5,000 languages (1916-2001)
    Zellig Sabbatai Harris
    United States linguist (born in Ukraine) who developed mathematical linguistics and interpreted speech and writing in a social context (1909-1992)
    types:
    bilingual, bilingualist
    a person who speaks two languages fluently
    transcriber, translator
    a person who translates written messages from one language to another
    type of:
    individual, mortal, person, somebody, someone, soul
    a human being
  2. adjective
    having a command of or composed in many languages
    “a polyglot traveler”
    “a polyglot Bible contains versions in different languages”
    Synonyms:
    multilingual
    using or knowing more than one language
Word Family
EDITOR’S CHOICE

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by Vocabulary.com’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.

SAT/PSAT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

TOEFL

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

ACT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week