sapient

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old French sapient, or its source, Latin sapiēns.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

sapient (comparative more sapient, superlative most sapient)

  1. (now literary or ironic) Possessing wisdom and discernment; wise, learned.
    • 2010, Christopher Hitchens, Hitch-22, Atlantic 2011, p. 217:
      In Europe I had been told by sapient academics that there wasn't really any class system in the United States: well, you couldn't prove that by the conditions in California's agribusinesses, or indeed its urban factories.
  2. (chiefly science fiction) Possessing intelligence and self-awareness.
    • 1962 January, Henry Beam Piper, “Naudsonce”, Analog Science Fact and Science Fiction, volume 68, number 5, page 9: 
      It was inhabited by a sapient humanoid race, and some of them were civilized enough to put it in Class V, and Colonial Office doctrine on Class V planets was rigid.

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Noun[edit]

sapient (plural sapients)

  1. (chiefly science fiction) An intelligent, self-aware being.
    • 1960, Philip José Farmer, A Woman a Day, page 30:
      It seemed to him a possibility that the Cold War Corps of March might have contacted hitherto unknown sapients on some just discovered interstellar planet.

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Latin[edit]

Verb[edit]

sapient

  1. third-person plural future active indicative of sapiō

Old French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowing from Latin sapiēns. Compare savant

Adjective[edit]

sapient m

  1. wise; sapient

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Romanian[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from Latin sapiēns, sapientis.

Adjective[edit]

sapient

  1. (rare) learned, wise

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