om·​ni·​scient | \ äm-ˈni-shənt How to pronounce omniscient (audio) \

Definition of omniscient

1 : having infinite awareness, understanding, and insight an omniscient author the narrator seems an omniscient person who tells us about the characters and their relations— Ira Konigsberg
2 : possessed of universal or complete knowledge the omniscient God

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Other Words from omniscient

omnisciently adverb

What is the origin of omniscient?

One who is omniscient literally knows all. The word omniscient, which has been part of English since at least the beginning of the 17th century, brings together two Latin roots: the prefix omni-, meaning "all," and the verb scire, meaning "to know." You will recognize omni- as the prefix that tells all in such words as omnivorous ("eating all" or, more precisely, "eating both meat and vegetables") and omnipotent ("all-powerful"). Scire likewise has a number of other knowledge-related descendants in English, including conscience, science, and prescience (meaning "foreknowledge").

Examples of omniscient in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Mao, like God, could be credibly omniscient only by being unpredictably seen. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, "The Field Guide to Tyranny," 16 Dec. 2019 Even beyond the innovative choice of omniscient vernacular narrator, this is a novel in love with West Indian Vernacular English (WIVE). Dohra Ahmad, The New York Review of Books, "A Lark in West Indian London," 10 Jan. 2020 Star Wars will continue to exist in an omniscient Force-like fashion, in everything from toys to TV shows to videogames to theme parks, but new movies have always been the brand’s creative core. James Hibberd,, "Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker," 19 Nov. 2019 Palmer’s omniscient narrator roams between characters, watching them debate whether Mary is a liar or a miracle. Lily Meyer, The Atlantic, "An 18th-Century Birthing Scam," 27 Nov. 2019 But be sure to use your newfound omniscient powers wisely. Robin Tribble, Popular Mechanics, "How to Use Apple's Find My Friends App Like a Pro," 13 Nov. 2018 The first season of the show ended after a long and mostly silent sequence: the mute nightmare of Kendall wriggling from a sinking car, one with a dying human being inside it, and scrambling into the grasp of his omniscient father and his fixers. Troy Patterson, The New Yorker, "The Trash-Talk Pyrotechnics of the “Succession” Finale," 14 Oct. 2019 That’s just one masterstroke in a film full of them: Michael Ballhaus’ ravishing cinematography; a powerfully wistful coda; Wharton’s wry, mannered prose transposed near-verbatim into an omniscient narrator’s sharp-tongued voice-over. Tyler Aquilina,, "Here are some underappreciated Martin Scorsese movies to pair with The Irishman," 1 Nov. 2019 Caught between childhood and the inscrutable world of adults, a girl needs a female mentor to teach her how to use a contraband compass-like device called an alethiometer that works kind of like an omniscient, cosmic Google. Judy Berman, Time, "HBO's Lavish His Dark Materials Adaptation Is Strictly for Fantasy Fans," 25 Oct. 2019

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

1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for omniscient

New Latin omniscient-, omnisciens, back-formation from Medieval Latin omniscientia

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Time Traveler for omniscient

Time Traveler

The first known use of omniscient was in 1598

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Last Updated

22 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Omniscient.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for omniscient


How to pronounce omniscient (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of omniscient

formal : knowing everything : having unlimited understanding or knowledge

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