Word: omniscient

Pronunciation: ahm-NI-shənt

Part of Speech: adjective

Definition: knowing everything

Source: Oxford Dictionaries


Last Monday’s Word of the Week post was about a word used to define things that are present everywhere. Continuing on the same line, today’s vocabulary word also refers to what encompasses everything. The difference is that this time, the “everything” in question is knowledge.

An “omniscient” person is someone who knows everything. The word itself is Latin and means “all-knowing” (probably stemming from omnisciens). Originating in the early 17th century, the adjective is made up of two roots: the adjective omnis “all” and the verb scire “to know”.

There are a couple of reasons I like the word “omniscient”. For one, I’m fascinated with knowledge, so any being with an infinite supply of it is one I’d be interested to read about. At the same time, “omniscient” is a significant word in the non-fiction aspect of writing, as it refers to a type of narrative voice where the narrator is fully aware of every detail in the story, and thus can relate the perspective of any character. It can refer to an all-seeing character or just a writing technique, but either way, “omniscient” is an important word for any writer to know!

What are your thoughts on this word? Any suggestions for future “Word of the Week” featured words?

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