9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[sa-vahnt, sav-uh nt; French sa-vahn] /sæˈvɑnt, ˈsæv ənt; French saˈvɑ̃/
noun, plural savants
[sa-vahnts, sav-uh nts; French sa-vahn] /sæˈvɑnts, ˈsæv ənts; French saˈvɑ̃/ (Show IPA)
a person of profound or extensive learning; learned scholar.
Origin of savant
1710-20; < French: man of learning, scholar, old present participle of savoir to know ≪ Latin sapere to be wise; see sapient Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for savant
  • But his success meant that life imitated art, and he emerged as a business savant.
  • The cooking speaks of a light hand and a savant use of herbs and spices.
  • With gloves, not so bad, as long as one of the bums isn't some sort of boxing savant.
  • But above all, he is a savant who can't hide his suspicion that he's smarter than his interlocutors.
  • The audience broke into indulgent laughter, humoring the rube savant.
British Dictionary definitions for savant


/ˈsævənt; French savɑ̃/
a man of great learning; sage
Derived Forms
savante, noun:feminine
Word Origin
C18: from French, from savoir to know, from Latin sapere to be wise; see sapient
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for savant

"one eminent for learning," 1719, from French savant "a learned man," noun use of adjective savant "learned, knowing," former present participle of savoir "to know," from Vulgar Latin *sapere, from Latin sapere "be wise" (see sapient).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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