Polymath (Definition)

TL:DR | A textbook definition combined with my own interpretation in this documentation for Polymath.

2 min read
Polymath (Definition)


" A polymath[note 1] (Greek: πολυμαθής,, polymathēs, "having learned much"; Latin: homo universalis, "universal man")[2] is an individual whose knowledge spans a significant number of subjects, known to draw on complex bodies of knowledge to solve specific problems." -WikiPedia

That is the Wikipedia definition for those who are curious, but my definition differs slightly.

A polymath is someone who is a master of a skill in various areas. The skills do not have to be related, although often that helps in transition of learning. The benefit to this diversification is that you are able to approach a problem, and come up with solutions completely not thought of before.

As much as I love the word/idea of polymath, it is an old title. One that sadly has been lost to the ages for the most part. Many people have adopted for their own needs, like myself, but I find that it doesn't for the most part fit with our modern society.


This is why PolyInnovator came to be, to be a modern version of the old polymath. Considering that Innovation has become the catalyst for true change, for more than it ever has in history. I felt that the need for a Polymath of Innovation was monumental.

In simple terms a polymath is someone is a jack of all trades. Someone who can do the job of everyone, and generally to a high level of skill.

A true polymath is someone, in my definition, who is a master in 3 or more fields.

Researchers in the Space

There are many great people digging into the ideas of polymathy, and even some who have come onto the PolyCast too.

Their work helps us understand the different levels of polymathy, and what can be done to achieve greater levels of understanding/knowledge/competency.

The PolyCast Interviews

I added this section to give more context as well, considering the field of polymathy is evolving at this point. People are trying to define what it truly means, and in the context of the modern age.

During my interviews on the The Polymath PolyCast, I always ask the question: "What is a Polymath to You?"

Given the nature of the question is subjective, then the responses return as more genuine. We are able to touch on the essence of polymathy, and what it means to people in a modern context.


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