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Via Latin Plūtarchus from Ancient Greek Πλούτᾰρχος (Ploútarkhos).


  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈpluː.tɑːk/
  • (file)
  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈplu.tɑɹk/
  • Hyphenation: Plu‧tarch

Proper noun[edit]


  1. The classical historian and essayist Lucius Mestrius Plutarchus (46-120 C.E.). Often used as a byword for a biographer, to suggest that the writer is especially skilled or has other attributes associated with Plutarch.
    • 1878, Morris, John G., Fifty Years in the Lutheran Ministry[1], →OL, page 11:
      I am indebted to [] those masterly pen and ink portraits of many of our deceased ministers drawn by the lamented Professor Stoever, in the Evangelical Review, whom I designated some years ago as the Plutarch of the Lutheran Church of America.
    • 1895, Hubbard, Elbert, Gladstone[2], →OL, page 100:
      Some day a Plutarch, without a Plutarch's prejudice will arise, and with malice toward none but charity for all, he will write the life of the statesman, Gladstone.
    • 1903, Crothers, Samuel McChord, The Gentle Reader[3], →LCCN, →OL, page 132:
      I must in candor admit that the Plutarch of piracy is sometimes more edifying than entertaining.

Derived terms[edit]



Plutarch (plural Plutarchs)

  1. Any specific edition of a work by Plutarch, often specifically Plutarch's Lives
    • 1895, O.A. Bierstadt, The Library of Robert Hoe[4], page 164:
      Both these English Plutarchs are here, two folios printed at London in 1657, and they once belonged to William Penn, the founder of Pennsylvania, and have his book-plates.

Further reading[edit]