philosopher

noun

phi·​los·​o·​pher fə-ˈlä-s(ə-)fər How to pronounce philosopher (audio)
1
a
: a person who seeks wisdom or enlightenment : scholar, thinker
b
: a student of philosophy
2
a
: a person whose philosophical perspective makes meeting trouble with equanimity easier
b
: an expounder of a theory in a particular area of experience
c
: one who philosophizes

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web In a 2018 review of his writings, Amir Hossein Khodaparast, a philosopher at IRIP, highlighted text fragments in Khosropanah’s writings that appeared to be copied verbatim from his own and other scholars’ publications. Bypouria Nazemi, science.org, 26 Jan. 2023 Robert Long, a philosopher at the Future for Humanity Institute at Oxford University, supports this caution. Oliver Whang, New York Times, 6 Jan. 2023 Doreen Fraser, a philosopher of quantum field theory at the University of Waterloo, in Canada, echoes this point. Adam Becker, Scientific American, 22 Nov. 2022 David Chalmers, a philosopher at New York University, explores the simulation hypothesis at some length in his 2022 book Reality +: Virtual Worlds and the Problems of Philosophy. Avery Hurt, Discover Magazine, 11 July 2022 For his lofty picture of the heavens, the Greek philosopher Aristotle took geocentrism to its logical conclusion. Cody Cottier, Discover Magazine, 13 Jan. 2023 For all her self-confidence, Hilma succumbs with painful extravagance to the Austrian philosopher Rudolf Steiner. Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter, 11 Jan. 2023 In the 1840s, the writer Hans Christian Andersen, the ballet choreographer August Bournonville and the philosopher Søren Kierkegaard were all milling around Copenhagen. J.s. Marcus, WSJ, 6 Jan. 2023 It was made in 1784 by Étienne-Louis Boullée, who imagined a cenotaph for Sir Isaac Newton, the preeminent natural philosopher of his day. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, 6 Oct. 2022 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Middle English philosophe, philosophre, from Anglo-French, from Latin philosophus, from Greek philosophos, from phil- + sophia wisdom, from sophos wise

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of philosopher was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near philosopher

Cite this Entry

“Philosopher.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/philosopher. Accessed 7 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition

philosopher

noun
phi·​los·​o·​pher fə-ˈläs-(ə-)fər How to pronounce philosopher (audio)
1
a
: a person who seeks wisdom or enlightenment : scholar, thinker
b
: a student of philosophy
2
: a person who is calm and patient when faced with trouble
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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