poly·​gen·​e·​sis | \ ˌpä-lē-ˈje-nə-səs How to pronounce polygenesis (audio) \

Definition of polygenesis

: development from more than one source

Examples of polygenesis in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The images of Renty and his daughter are part of Agassiz’s polygenesis work. Deirdre Fernandes, BostonGlobe.com, "Agassiz descendants put pressure on Harvard to give up slave photos," 19 June 2019 But Agassiz also advocated polygenesis, the belief that humans weren’t all the same species and that white people were superior. Deirdre Fernandes, BostonGlobe.com, "Agassiz descendants put pressure on Harvard to give up slave photos," 19 June 2019 Douglass was especially critical of the promotion of polygenesis: the idea that the races of humankind emerged in separate creation events and with unequal capacities. Britt Rusert, Slate Magazine, "Lessons to Learn From the “Fugitive Scientists”," 1 Mar. 2017 Far less so is Samuel Morton (champion of the obsolete theory of polygenesis) or Thomas Dixon (author of novels romanticizing Klan violence). Ibram X. Kendi, New York Times, "A History of Race and Racism in America, in 24 Chapters," 22 Feb. 2017 This shaped his application of special creationism to humans, in a theory that came to be known as polygenesis. National Geographic, "Darwin's Theory of Evolution Roiled U.S. on Eve of Civil War," 5 Feb. 2017

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

circa 1872, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for polygenesis

New Latin

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Time Traveler for polygenesis

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The first known use of polygenesis was circa 1872

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Cite this Entry

“Polygenesis.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/polygenesis?pronunciation&lang=en_us&dir=p&file=polyge03. Accessed 26 January 2020.

Comments on polygenesis

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to express in a more acceptable way

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