A panoply is a full suit of armor, or a protection or defense of some kind.
More generally, a panoply is a magnificent, full set of anything.
PAN uh plee
Part of speech:
(Countable nouns, like “bottle,” “piece,” and “decision,” are words for things that can be broken into exact units. You talk about “a bottle,” “three pieces,” and “many decisions.”
Likewise, talk about one panoply or multiple panoplies.)
Other forms: Panoplies is the plural.
Something that's literally or figuratively suited up in armor is panoplied,
and to panoply something is to give it a full, magnificent array of something.
How to use it:
Usually you talk about "a panoply of something" (or "the panoply of something,") as in "a panoply of luxurious services" or "the landscape's panoply of colors."
You can leave out the "of" part if your meaning is clear: "That apartment has a couple of features she likes, but this one has a panoply."
Note how the tone of this word is often positive. It makes you think of impressive, shining suits of armor, which is why we often use it to talk about displays and arrays that are glorious and grand.
But not everyone stays true to that tone, so you can certainly talk about "a panoply of problems," "a panoply of painful symptoms," etc. In negative senses like this, you're being sarcastic: it's like saying "a magnificent array of problems" and "a glorious set of painful symptoms." (I suspect not everyone understands or cares about this fine point: some people just use "panoply" like any other word meaning "bunch.")
Sometimes you'll see the phrase "a full panoply of something," but I don't recommend using it. "Panoply" already means "full set."
I was really impressed by our new moving company's panoply of included services. Not only did they box up everything and put detailed labels on each carton, but they'll also unpack everything and take away all the packing materials.
When school kids get a little older, they start to figure out that "Native American" doesn't mean a single culture but is an umbrella term for a panoply.
Look away from the screen to explain the definition in your own words. You’ll know you understand what "panoply" means when you can explain it without saying "array" or "full set."
Think of something vast and beautiful you've seen, either man-made or in nature, and fill in the blanks: "(A particular place) is a panoply of (something.)"
Example: "East Tennessee is a panoply of beautiful hills."
Spend at least 20 seconds occupying your mind with the game and quote below. Then try the review questions. Don’t go straight to the review now—let your working memory empty out first.
Playing With Words:
This month, we're playing with some fascinating thematic word lists assembled by Stephen Chrisomalis, an English language expert over at The Phrontistery who kindly gave permission for me to use his work. (Check out his site; you will definitely enjoy it!)
Try a question each day, and see the right answers here the following day--or if you can't wait, follow the link to Stephen's list to dig out the answers yourself. Have fun!
You might get the impression sometimes that your nation is an angelocracy, a clownocracy, a diabolocracy, a foolocracy, an infantocracy, or a moneyocracy. Most of those are real terms for types of governments or ways of describing leadership. Which one did I just make up, though?
Sorry for any nightmares, but take heart: there’s no such thing as a clownocracy.
Try this one today:
Use your knowledge of word roots to match up the Latin terms with what they mean!
"Verbatim" means _____.
"Syllabatim" means _____.
"Gradatim" means _____.
"Guttatim" means _____.
- drop by drop
- step by step
- word for word
- syllable by syllable
Can't wait until tomorrow for the right answers? Check out Stephen's full list and discussion at the Phrontistery.
A Point Well Made:
Friedrich Nietzsche: "To talk about oneself a great deal can also be a means of concealing oneself."
1. Some close opposites of PANOPLY are
A. DULLNESS and INACCURACY
B. UNIFORMITY and INCOMPLETENESS
C. MERITLESSNESS and INCOMPETENCE
2. The menu _____ a panoply of _____.
A. boasts .. desserts
B. includes .. prices
C. suffers from .. food allergy information
Answers are below.
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Make Your Point is crafted with love and brought to you each day for free by Mrs. Liesl Johnson, M.Ed., a word lover, learning enthusiast, and private tutor of reading and writing in the verdant little town of Hilo, Hawaii. For writing tips, online learning, essay guidance, and more, please visit www.HiloTutor.com.
Disclaimer: Word meanings presented here are expressed in plain language and are limited to common, useful applications only. Readers interested in authoritative and multiple definitions of words are encouraged to check a dictionary. Likewise, word meanings, usage, and pronunciations are limited to American English; these elements may vary across world Englishes.