philosopher

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Anglo-Norman or Middle French philosophe, from Latin philosophus, from Ancient Greek φιλόσοφος (philósophos, literally lover of wisdom) + -er.

Credited as having been coined by Pythagoras to describe himself.[1][2]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

philosopher (plural philosophers)

  1. A person devoted to studying and producing results in philosophy.
    • 2007, Harold Bloom, Bloom's Modern Critical Views: Stephen King
      Their playwrights knew better. Scandal, murder, hair-rending and railing against the gods sold tickets. King is not a philosopher. He knows how to sell tickets.
    • 1813, Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice
      This is not the sort of happiness which a man would in general wish to owe to his wife; but where other powers of entertainment are wanting, the true philosopher will derive benefit from such as are given.
  2. (obsolete) An alchemist.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Chaucer to this entry?)

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References[edit]

  1. ^ Attributed dates to Roman antiquity: Cicero, Tusculan Disputations, 5.3.8-9 = Heraclides Ponticus fr. 88 Wehrli, Diogenes Laertius 1.12, 8.8, Iamblichus VP 58.
  2. ^ This view has been challenged by Walter Burkert, but it has been defended by C.J. De Vogel, Pythagoras and Early Pythagoreanism (1966), pp. 97–102, and C. Riedweg, Pythagoras: His Life, Teaching, And Influence (2005), p. 92.

French[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

philosopher

  1. to philosophize

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Latin[edit]

Verb[edit]

philosopher

  1. first-person singular present active subjunctive of philosophor