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Ancient GreekEdit

Alternative formsEdit


From πλήθω (plḗthō, to fill), the intransitive counterpart of πίμπλημι (pímplēmi).




πλῆθος (plêthosn (genitive πλήθεος or πλήθους); third declension (Attic, Doric, Arcadocypriot)

  1. a large number of things, a great number
  2. majority, main portion
  3. something of large size or magnitude
  4. specifically: a large group of people: crowd, multitude, throng, mob
  5. populace, people, general public
  6. magnitude, size, extent
    1. amount, quantity
      • 460 BCE – 420 BCE, Herodotus, Histories
        ἐὸν ὀρέων καὶ πλήθεϊ μέγιστον καὶ μεγάθεϊ ὑψηλότατον.
        eòn oréōn kaì plḗtheï mégiston kaì megátheï hupsēlótaton.
        being greatest in number and loftiest in height of mountains
      • 460 BCE – 395 BCE, Thucydides, 3 70.5
        πρὸς τὰ ἱερὰ ἱκετῶν καθεζομένων διὰ πλῆθος τῆς ζημίας, ὅπως ταξάμενοι ἀποδῶσιν
        pròs tà hierà hiketôn kathezoménōn dià plêthos tês zēmías, hópōs taxámenoi apodôsin
        [they] sat as suppliants in the temple because of the quantity of the fine, [praying] that they could pay it in installments
    2. (of time) length
      • 460 BCE – 395 BCE, Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War 1.1.3
        τὰ γὰρ πρὸ αὐτῶν καὶ τὰ ἔτι παλαίτερα σαφῶς μὲν εὑρεῖν διὰ χρόνου πλῆθος ἀδύνατα ἦν
        tà gàr prò autôn kaì tà éti palaítera saphôs mèn heureîn dià khrónou plêthos adúnata ên
        the events before them and the events from a longer time ago were impossible to clearly determine because of the length of time

Usage notesEdit

Several of the senses of this noun mirror those of the adjective πολύς (polús, much, many).