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From French gnomique, ultimately from Ancient Greek γνωμικός (gnōmikós), from γνώμη (gnṓmē, thought, judgement), akin to γιγνώσκω (gignṓskō, know).


gnomic (comparative more gnomic, superlative most gnomic)

  1. Of, or relating to gnomes (sententious sayings).
    • G. R. Lewes
      a city long famous as the seat of elegiac and gnomic poetry
    • 2013, Adam Roberts, The Riddles of The Hobbit, Palgrave Macmillan (→ISBN), page 17:
      Old English culture was threaded through with riddles, cryptograms, gnomic verses, charms and riddling modes of speech such as litotes, just as Modern English culture is (if you will forgive me) riddled with jokes and catch-phrases, crosswords and quizzes, irony and sarcasm.
  2. (of a saying or aphorism) Mysterious and often incomprehensible yet seemingly wise.
    He always makes gnomic utterances.
  3. (grammar) Expressing general truths or aphorisms.
    gnomic aspect

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