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

Their most striking quality is the lack of omniscient commentary. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction: A Proving Ground for Men and Storytellers," 16 Aug. 2018 The omniscient space pebbles have not made that part clear to me. Chelsea Peng, Marie Claire, "Your 2017 Love Horoscope: A Parody," 28 Dec. 2016 Even trans people — the omniscient oracles for the social-justice left — can’t toe the line. Andrew Sullivan, Daily Intelligencer, "Anthony Kennedy and the Death of True American Conservatism," 29 June 2018 University librarians like my parents love flying below the radar, omniscient about university curriculum but not bound by classroom teaching, grading, or even regular students. Alice Bolin, Longreads, "The Daughter as Detective," 26 June 2018 The story of your life doesn’t come with an omniscient narrator. New York Times, "Can a Professor Pay for a Student’s Counseling?," 19 June 2018 An Act One murder mystery lets the audience sees violin-loving Holmes strut his stuff and is solved with his usual, nearly omniscient flair. Matthew J. Palm,, "Entertaining Sherlock Holmes musical doesn't always hit the right emotional notes," 9 June 2018 Science serves as an omniscient narrator in some of the other tales, and sometimes a skeptic, questioning voice is introduced to keep us on our toes. Karin Altenberg, WSJ, "‘Evolutions’ Review: How the Butterfly Got Its Spots," 8 June 2018 In lieu of an omniscient commentariat, Groff proffers events so terrifying as to be almost supernatural. Eugenia Williamson,, "Tales of women, yet important," 7 June 2018

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

The first known use of omniscient was in 1598

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English Language Learners Definition of omniscient

formal : knowing everything : having unlimited understanding or knowledge

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Comments on omniscient

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


to take the place or position of

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