Middle English , from wisdom Old English ( wīsdōm “ wisdom ”), from Proto-Germanic ( *wīsadōmaz “ wisdom ”), corresponding to + wise or -dom + wise ( doom “ judgement ”). Cognate with Scots , wisdom ( wysdom “ wisdom ”), West Frisian ( wiisdom “ wisdom ”), Dutch ( wijsdom “ wisdom ”), German ( Weistum “ legal sentence ”), Danish/Norwegian/Swedish ( visdom “ wisdom ”), Icelandic ( vísdómur “ wisdom ”).
wisdom ( , countable and uncountable plural ) wisdoms
( uncountable ) An element of personal character that enables one to distinguish the wise from the unwise.
( countable ) A piece of wise advice. The discretionary use of
knowledge for the greatest good. The
ability to apply relevant knowledge in an insightful way, especially to different situations from that in which the knowledge was gained. The ability to make a decision based on the combination of knowledge, experience, and intuitive understanding.
( theology ) The ability to know and apply spiritual truths.
1652, Eugenius Philalethes, The Fame and Confeſſion of the Fraternity of…the Roſie Croſs,
pages 1–2 of the preface
Wiſdom…is to a man an infinite Treaſure, for ſhe is the Breath of the Power of God, and a pure Influence that floweth from the Glory of the Almighty; ſhe is the Brightneſs of Eternal Light, and an undefiled Mirror of the Majeſty of God, and an Image of his Goodneſs; ſhe teacheth us Soberneſs and Prudence, Righteouſneſs and Strength; ſhe underſtands the Subtilty of words, and Solution of dark ſentences; ſhe foreknoweth Signs and Wonders, and what ſhall happen in time to come.
Derived terms Edit
Related terms Edit
element of personal character
discretionary use of knowledge for the greatest good
ability to apply relevant knowledge in an insightful way
ability to make a decision based on the combination of knowledge, experience, and intuitive understanding
ability to know and apply spiritual truths
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.
Translations to be checked
Arabic: حِكْمَةٌ ( f ḥikma)
Bulgarian: ( мъдрост mǎdrost)
Cherokee: ( ᎠᎦᏙᎲᏍᏗ agatohvsdi)
Mandarin: , 智慧 ( 才智 zhìhuì)
Georgian: ( ცოდნა c’odna)
Italian: saggezza f
Korean: ( 지혜 jihye)
Latin: sapientia f
Malayalam: ( ജ്ഞാനം jnaanam), ( അറിവ് aRivu)
Persian: عقل ( (fa) aghal)
Portuguese: sabedoria f
Slovene: modrost (sl) f
Spanish: sabiduría (es) f
Swedish: visdom (sv) c
Turkish: akil (tr)
Uyghur: ( aqiliq aqiliq)
Welsh: callineb Middle English Edit Old English Edit
+ wīs . Cognate with Old Norse dōm . vísdómr
wisdom (strong a-stem) Last modified on 30 March 2014, at 21:21