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The Ancient Greek prefix poly- + synthetic, from Latin synthesis (collection, set, composition), from Ancient Greek σύνθεσις (súnthesis, composition), from συντίθημι (suntíthēmi, to put together, combine), from συν- (sun-, together) + τίθημι (títhēmi, to put, place), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰe- (to put, to do).


polysynthetic (comparative more polysynthetic, superlative most polysynthetic)

  1. (grammar) said of a language, characterized by a prevalence of relatively long words containing a large number of morphemes. Typically, the morphemes are bound (i.e., they cannot stand alone as independent words). An example of a polysynthetic language is Ojibwe, where:
    • baataanitaaanishinaabemong = "being able to speak Ojibwe."
    • ngiinitaaozhibii'amaadimin = "we used to write to each other."
  2. (mineralogy) Having layers of twin crystals

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