plen·​i·​tude | \ ˈple-nə-ˌtüd How to pronounce plenitude (audio) , -ˌtyüd \

Definition of plenitude

1 : the quality or state of being full : completeness
2 : a great sufficiency : abundance

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Plenitude was first recorded in English during the 15th century and ultimately comes to us from "plenus," the Latin word for "full." "Plenus" has also given us "plenty," which in turn influenced a variation on "plenitude": "plentitude." Some usage commentators have objected to "plentitude," but it has been in use since the early 1600s and has appeared in the works of such writers as Henry James and Sir Walter Scott. Both words are used in the same sorts of contexts, but "plentitude" is not used as frequently as "plenitude."

Examples of plenitude in a Sentence

She has gathered a plenitude of information on the topic. there's a plenitude of natural beauty in the state
Recent Examples on the Web In the museums in Athens the fruits of this quest were preserved in countless cavernous galleries, the faces and forms of antiquity that in their extraordinary plenitude constituted a statement about the desire of man to make his mark. New York Times, 19 Apr. 2022 Metaphorically speaking, books are always taking us to the big city, opening our eyes to the world’s plenitude and diversity. Washington Post, 2 Mar. 2022 No drums like them, with such a plenitude of notes, were then in existence. Richard Preston, The New Yorker, 13 Dec. 2021 And that’s not even taking into consideration the plenitude of Thailand, a country of 70 million people who can enjoy multiple types of eggplant and innumerable varieties of shrimp paste. New York Times, 2 Jan. 2021 Thus with a trans-temporal jump do the pathologies of one time destroy the plenitude of another. Jack Butler, National Review, 5 Dec. 2020 If not, a bargain can be struck between giver and gifted, allowing anxieties about unearned plenitude to be assuaged. Matthew Sweet, The Economist, 4 Dec. 2020 The clients often have a plenitude of bedrooms or bunks and boast of their large families. Kyle Chayka, The New Yorker, 16 Nov. 2020 Nguyen plans to continue contributing to that plenitude. Dorany Pineda, Los Angeles Times, 2 Nov. 2020 See More

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

First Known Use of plenitude

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for plenitude

Middle English plenitude, from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French, from Latin plenitudo, from plenus

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The first known use of plenitude was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

5 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Plenitude.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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