poly·​mor·​phous ˌpä-lē-ˈmȯr-fəs How to pronounce polymorphous (audio)
: having, assuming, or occurring in various forms, characters, or styles : polymorphic
a polymorphous rash
polymorphous sexuality
polymorphously adverb

Examples of polymorphous in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Moreover, there are specific skin reactions that can happen during early summer with the first exposure to ultraviolet radiation, such as polymorphous light eruption (or PMLE), a reaction of sun sensitivity that happens when our skin is not exposed to the sun for long periods of time. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, 11 June 2024 Goddesses take pleasure in themselves, and a wonderful polymorphous sexuality underlies it all. Jerry Saltz, Vulture, 8 Mar. 2024 The songs had accreted parts over decades, with material from Gabriel’s longtime band; from the polymorphous musician Brian Eno; from Swedish and South African choirs; from orchestral arrangements; and from Gabriel’s library of samples and sessions. Jon Pareles, New York Times, 30 Nov. 2023 On her canvases, polymorphous, shape-shifting figures collide and intertwine; heads multiply; limbs get entangled with each other. Kin Woo, New York Times, 5 July 2023 In the late 1970s Mueller traded on her midnight-movie stardom to become a leading light of New York’s downtown scene at the height of its polymorphous perversity. Negar Azimi, The New York Review of Books, 30 Mar. 2023 Along with enduring anxious nights underground during aerial warfare, each is shown in his own way to have drawn on more transcendent themes, namely the chthonic mysteries of the English landscape and the polymorphous eroticism of the nude human body. Richard B. Woodward, WSJ, 3 Dec. 2022 Viewed today, the show’s quirky communitarianism — its idea of America as a polymorphous, all-welcoming dance party — feels like both celebration and requiem for the irreplaceable delight dancing together on a stage. James Poniewozik, New York Times, 16 Oct. 2020 Generally left-leaning people whose politics were either amorphous or polymorphous appropriated the adjective, too. Win McCormack, The New Republic, 25 Sep. 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'polymorphous.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Greek polymorphos, from poly- + -morphos -morphous

First Known Use

1754, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of polymorphous was in 1754

Dictionary Entries Near polymorphous

Cite this Entry

“Polymorphous.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/polymorphous. Accessed 24 Jul. 2024.

Medical Definition


poly·​mor·​phous -ˈmȯr-fəs How to pronounce polymorphous (audio)
: having, assuming, or occurring in various forms : polymorphic
polymorphous skin rashes
polymorphously adverb
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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