panoply

noun
pan·​o·​ply | \ˈpa-nə-plē \
plural panoplies

Definition of panoply 

1a : a full suit of armor Knights in panoply were ready for battle.

b : ceremonial attire The nobles were in panoply for the coronation.

2 : something forming a protective covering faces dim in a panoply of smoke— William Baucke

3a : a magnificent or impressive array the full panoply of a military funeral woods … in their full panoply of autumn foliage— S. P. B. Mais

b : a display of all appropriate appurtenances no need for the panoply of power windows … beyond which the usual panoply of modern mechanical conveniences can brazenly flourish— Lewis Mumford

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Did You Know?

Panoply comes from the Greek word panoplia, which referred to the full suit of armor worn by "hoplites," heavily armed infantry soldiers of ancient Greece. "Panoplia" is a blend of the prefix pan-, meaning "all," and hopla, meaning "arms" or "armor." (As you may have guessed already, "hopla" is also an ancestor of "hoplite.") "Panoply" entered the English language in the 17th century, and since then it has developed other senses which extend both the "armor" and the "full set" aspects of its original use.

Examples of panoply in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Along the way, there was the full panoply of the very English arts of understatement and absurdity. David Abrahams, Vogue, "A Very British Protest Unites London," 14 July 2018 The finished volume is a funky panoply of arabesques, polygons and polyhedra, a fantasy of spikes, spines and spires, left levitating in white space or emerging spectrally from backgrounds dark as night. Christoph Irmscher, WSJ, "‘The Art and Science of Ernst Haeckel’ Review: The Zoologist as Artist," 13 Apr. 2018 Now, isn’t this panoply of procedures — arguably the mother of all cosmetic undertakings — deserving of a more dignified name? Jolene Edgar, Allure, "Life in Plastic: A Complete Guide to the "Mommy Makeover"," 16 July 2018 Here is dance with its own evocative panoply of melodies, rhythms, harmonies, dynamics, constructions. New York Times, "Review: Pam Tanowitz’s ‘Four Quartets’ Hits Poetic Heights," 8 July 2018 The shared experience of tapas, a panoply of food, drink, and conversation uniquely Spanish, often quite magical. Robin Currie, Philly.com, "Bring the tapas bar home with 'Boqueria'," 5 July 2018 In the panoply of commanders who turned much of Central America into a killing field in the 1980s, General Ríos Montt was one of the most murderous. Stephen Kinzer, New York Times, "Efraín Ríos Montt, Guatemalan Dictator Convicted of Genocide, Dies at 91," 1 Apr. 2018 Elrich has racked up a panoply of other endorsements — many from labor unions and progressive groups — in his bid to win the six-way Democratic primary race, which in liberal Montgomery is tantamount to winning the general election. Washington Post, "Local Digest: Man fatally shot in Southeast Washington," 9 June 2018 The court’s decision presents public unions with an immediate problem and a panoply of broader issues. Michael Hiltzik, latimes.com, "Dealt a body blow by the Supreme Court, unions ponder: Where do we go from here?," 28 June 2018

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

circa 1637, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for panoply

Greek panoplia, from pan- + hopla arms, armor, plural of hoplon tool, weapon — more at hoplite

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Dictionary Entries near panoply

panomphean

Panopeus

panoplied

panoply

panoptic

panopticon

panoram

Statistics for panoply

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for panoply

The first known use of panoply was circa 1637

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More Definitions for panoply

panoply

noun

English Language Learners Definition of panoply

: a group or collection that is impressive because it is so big or because it includes so many different kinds of people or things

More from Merriam-Webster on panoply

Nglish: Translation of panoply for Spanish Speakers

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