om·​nip·​o·​tent | \ äm-ˈni-pə-tənt How to pronounce omnipotent (audio) \

Definition of omnipotent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 often capitalized : almighty sense 1
2 : having virtually unlimited authority or influence an omnipotent ruler
3 obsolete : arrant


om·​nip·​o·​tent | \ äm-ˈni-pə-tənt How to pronounce omnipotent (audio) \

Definition of omnipotent (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : one who has unlimited power or authority : one who is omnipotent
2 capitalized : god sense 1

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Other Words from omnipotent


omnipotently adverb

Synonyms for omnipotent

Synonyms: Adjective

all-powerful, almighty

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Knowledge Is Power: Defining Omnipotent


The word omnipotent made its way into English through Anglo-French, but it ultimately derives from the Latin prefix omni-, meaning "all," and the word potens, meaning "potent." The omni- prefix has also given us similar words such as omniscient (meaning "all-knowing") and omnivorous (describing an animal that eats both plants and other animals). Although omnipotent is used in general contexts to mean "all-powerful" (as in "an omnipotent warlord"), its original applications in English referred specifically to the power held by an almighty God. The word has been used as an English adjective since the 14th century; since 1600 it has also been used as a noun referring to one who is omnipotent.

Examples of omnipotent in a Sentence


Rockefeller mostly left the uncertain task of drilling to thousands of independent producers, who then competed furiously to sell him crude oil at the cheapest possible price. As a result, he was loathed by the drillers, who saw him as an omnipotent deity shadowing their lives. — Ron Chernow, Vanity Fair, May 1998 Whether or not the Big Bang truly implies that the universe was created out of nothing by an omnipotent deity in a wholly gratuitous act of love, it does demonstrate that the universe is, as philosophers say, contingent—that is, it need not have existed. — Jim Holt, Harper's, November 1994 Tad fixes another round and by the time you all troop out of the bathroom you are feeling omnipotent. — Jay McInerney, Bright Lights, Big City, 1984 the nearly universal religious belief that God is omnipotent and omniscient


He pursued his own thoughts without heeding me. 'Jane! you think me, I daresay, an irreligious dog: but my heart swells with gratitude to the beneficent God of this earth just now.  … I did wrong: I would have sullied my innocent flower—breathed guilt on its purity: the Omnipotent snatched it from me.' — Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre, 1847

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The ultimate threat of an omnipotent artificial intelligence demands that humanity augment or die. Josh Wilbur, WIRED, "You Could Live Forever With This Sci-Fi Time Hack," 4 June 2019 The virtually omnipotent Kilgrave stalks Jessica through 13 episodes, orchestrating elaborate nightmare scenarios and murdering whenever the whim strikes him. Noah Berlatsky, The Verge, "Since season 1, Jessica Jones has struggled to mix horror with superheroes," 18 June 2019 Casey downplayed Facebook’s seemingly omnipotent advantage in getting its cryptocurrency adopted and used, saying its incumbent position will not guarantee success. Robert Hackett, Fortune, "Facebook’s Cryptocurrency Ambitions Provoke Heated Debate—The Ledger," 17 June 2019 The wealthy, omnipotent Oprah Winfrey runs a farm that supplies local restaurants with humble cabbage. Martha Cheng, WSJ, "Maui: A Discriminating Insider’s Guide," 8 May 2019 An omnipotent Apollo scowls over the mantel; a hungover Bacchus sleeps off a bender in a bedroom downstairs. James Mcauley, Town & Country, "The Tragic, Fascinating History of Santo Sospir," 13 Aug. 2018 Likethumb_up1 Replyreply Linklink Copy Reportflag omnipotent one 22 hours ago First, those without kids can just shut it. Lindsey Bever, Washington Post, "‘He was being a little bully’: Video shows father punishing his 10-year-old with run in the rain," 6 Mar. 2018 The fantasy of an omnipotent leader is perpetually popular in democracies, because democratic politics is all about compromise and incrementalism. Adam Kirsch, The Atlantic, "Bill Clinton’s Novel Isn't a Thriller—It's a Fantasy," 16 June 2018 Even when these companies go public, some of their founders remain omnipotent. Christopher Mims, WSJ, "The Age of Tech Superheroes Must End," 7 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But why must the formerly omnipotent be treated with contempt? Joe Queenan, WSJ, "The Horror Ahead if We Topple the King of Apples," 4 Oct. 2018 More modern gods are also embodied: Gillian Anderson plays screen-bound, black-and-white Media as a kind of omnipotent Lucille Ball; the quiffed deity of the internet, Technology Boy, rules a virtual world accessed via a VR headset. Tim Dowling, Newsweek, "Review: 'American Gods' Demands Full Attention and Not a Little Faith," 27 Apr. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'omnipotent.' 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 omnipotent


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1600, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for omnipotent

Adjective and Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin omnipotent-, omnipotens, from omni- + potent-, potens potent

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Last Updated

20 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for omnipotent

The first known use of omnipotent was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for omnipotent



English Language Learners Definition of omnipotent

formal : having complete or unlimited power


om·​nip·​o·​tent | \ äm-ˈni-pə-tənt How to pronounce omnipotent (audio) \

Kids Definition of omnipotent

: having power or authority without limit : almighty

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More from Merriam-Webster on omnipotent

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with omnipotent

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for omnipotent

Britannica English: Translation of omnipotent for Arabic Speakers

Comments on omnipotent

What made you want to look up omnipotent? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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