A Word A Day : Plethora


Tuesday, 1st January 2008 : Today's Word is ...


( Noun )

Pronunciation : plé-tho-raa

1. a very large amount of something or number of things, especially an excessive amount ( formal )

2. an excess of blood in a part of the body, especially in the facial veins, causing a ruddy complexion

3. a condition of going or being beyond what is needed, desired, or appropriate

4. the attribute of being superfluous and unneeded


Mid-16th century - Via late Latin - Greek plēthorē - plēthein - be full


deluge, flood, glut, many, much, overflow, overkill, overmuch, plenty, profusion, superabundance, superfluity, surfeit, surplus,embarrassment, excess, excessiveness, exorbitance, extravagance, extravagancy, extravagantness, overabundance, superabundance, superfluousness


dearth, few, lack, little, need, rarity, scarcity, want

Contextual Examples:

• I have a plethora of potentially putrid puzzlers.

• This library contains a plethora of new scholarly articles on the subject.

• The mind of man can scarce conceive the plethora of carnivorous life in this lost world.

• We ate a plethora of candy on Halloween and a plethora of turkey on Thanksgiving.

• Letting the air force use our backyard as a bombing range created a plethora of problems.

Related Words:

plethoric: Adjective

plethorically: Adverb

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