cos·​mop·​o·​lite | \ käz-ˈmä-pə-ˌlīt How to pronounce cosmopolite (audio) \

Definition of cosmopolite

1 : a sophisticated, widely traveled person : a cosmopolitan person "… he is a polished gentleman, a citizen of the world—yes, a true cosmopolite…"— Nathaniel Hawthorne
2 : an organism found in most parts of the world and under varied ecological conditions : a cosmopolitan organism A few of these kinds of oysters had and have a wide distribution around the world. One such cosmopolite is the tropical P. hyotis, as far-flung in habitat as coral reefs and usually found in conjunction with them, in the Indian Ocean, the south Pacific, the Caribbean, the west coast of Africa, etc.— Eleanor Clark

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Other Words from cosmopolite

cosmopolitism \ käz-​ˈmä-​pə-​ˌlī-​ˌti-​zəm How to pronounce cosmopolite (audio) , -​lə-​ˌti-​ ; ˌkäz-​mə-​ˈpä-​lə-​ˌti-​ \ noun

Examples of cosmopolite in a Sentence

having sung in opera houses all over the world, she has the confident demeanor of a seasoned cosmopolite
Recent Examples on the Web In one scene, the function of food as a status symbol for globe-trotting cosmopolites becomes clear. Amelia Lester, New York Times, "For These Characters, Foreign Cultures Are Just Another Consumer Good," 18 Apr. 2018 Born in France into a Turkish family, Shafak, 46, is the ultimate modern cosmopolite. John Timpane,, "Elif Shafak: A new novel, a divided Turkey, and woman power," 24 Jan. 2018 The Gersons named their building Ballinhaus as a monument to the country’s late cosmopolite-in-chief. Yuliya Komska, Smithsonian, "Inside the House of Zyklon B," 10 Oct. 2017 That vaudevillian public disdain for East Coast intellectuals, Ivy League blue bloods, cosmopolites — all of it started with Nixon. Jennifer Senior, New York Times, "‘Richard Nixon,’ Portrait of a Thin-Skinned, Media-Hating President," 29 Mar. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cosmopolite.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cosmopolite

circa 1618, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cosmopolite

New Latin cosmopolites, from Greek kosmopolitēs, from kosmos + politēs citizen

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Time Traveler for cosmopolite

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The first known use of cosmopolite was circa 1618

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Cite this Entry

“Cosmopolite.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Mar. 2021.

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