phi·​lan·​thro·​pist | \ fə-ˈlan(t)-thrə-pist How to pronounce philanthropist (audio) \

Definition of philanthropist

: one who makes an active effort to promote human welfare : a person who practices philanthropy

Examples of philanthropist in a Sentence

Among his converts was Arthur Tappan, a New York textile merchant and philanthropist who sheltered and guided the development of the antislavery movement through its long early years by dint of sheer openhandedness. — Marilynne Robinson, The Death of Adam, (1998) 2005 John D. was indisputably a great philanthropist. He took care of his family first, of course; but he founded the University of Chicago in 1892, the Rockefeller Institute (now Rockefeller University) in 1901, and the Rockefeller Foundation in 1911, and made other substantial gifts along the way. — Robert M. Solow, New Republic, 23 Dec. 2002 You had to admire it and admire the man, who sat now like a benign locust, his slender insectile body swamped in a black leather chair, leaning over the desk, all smiles, a parasite disguised as a philanthropist. — Zadie Smith, White Teeth, 2000 … a hundred-and-one-year-old Jewish philanthropist in Hartsdale named Henry J. Gaisman donated two and a quarter million dollars to the Archdiocese to purchase the property and preserve the integrity of the landmark. — Brendan Gill, New Yorker, 10 June 1991
Recent Examples on the Web Major League All-Star Game, take a moment to remember the breadth of her accomplishments — mother, civil rights activist, housing advocate, educational philanthropist and accomplished medical professional. Los Angeles Times, 19 July 2022 The Kluge prize is named for the late philanthropist and television mogul. Fox News, 22 June 2022 The philanthropist and veteran school-reform advocate who served as education secretary under President Trump says the Covid pandemic was an inflection point. Jason L. Riley, WSJ, 21 June 2022 The family of philanthropist and supporter Margot Lacy Eccles named and endowed the position of artistic director. Domenica Bongiovanni, The Indianapolis Star, 16 June 2022 The private investment comes from Wayfarer Studios’ co-founder Steve Sarowitz, the entrepreneur, billionaire philanthropist and chairman of software company Paylocity, along with his wife, Jessica Sarowitz. Elizabeth Wagmeister, Variety, 15 June 2022 Botanists refer to it by its scientific name, Carnegiea gigantean, after the philanthropist and patron of science, Andrew Carnegie. Douglas C. Towne, The Arizona Republic, 11 June 2022 Mario Lopez is a successful television host, actor, producer, philanthropist and high school wrestler who will be inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in Stillwater, Okla., on Saturday. William A. Virchis, San Diego Union-Tribune, 3 June 2022 The page has also received several other high-dollar donations and was promoted on social media by Bill Pulte, a philanthropist and CEO of the investment firm Pulte Capital. Lindsey Bever, Washington Post, 28 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of philanthropist

circa 1736, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for philanthropist

see philanthropy

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The first known use of philanthropist was circa 1736

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Last Updated

27 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Philanthropist.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for philanthropist


phi·​lan·​thro·​pist | \ fə-ˈlan-thrə-pəst How to pronounce philanthropist (audio) \

Kids Definition of philanthropist

: a person who gives generously to help other people

More from Merriam-Webster on philanthropist

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for philanthropist

Nglish: Translation of philanthropist for Spanish Speakers


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