Advertisement - Continue reading below

Definition of "genius" []

  • Extraordinary intellectual and creative power. (noun)
  • A person of extraordinary intellect and talent: "One is not born a genius, one becomes a genius” ( Simone de Beauvoir). (noun)
  • A person who has an exceptionally high intelligence quotient, typically above 140. (noun)
  • A strong natural talent, aptitude, or inclination: has a genius for choosing the right words. (noun)
  • One who has such a talent or inclination: a genius at diplomacy. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "genius" in a sentence
  • "Shakespeare's genius would manifest itself in the superior effect with which he used knowledge acquired in this manner; but his _genius_ would not have led him to choose the dry and affected phraseology of the law as the vehicle of his flowing thought, and to use it so much oftener than any other of the numerous dramatists of his time, to all of whom the courts were as open as to him."
  • "On me, a mere prosperous tradesman, and busy politician and man of the world, devolves the delicate and responsible task of being the first to write the life of the greatest literary genius this century has produced, _and of revealing the strange secret of that genius_, which has lighted up the darkness of these latter times as with a pillar of fire by night."
  • "Much laborious discussion has been wasted in defining genius, particularly by the countrymen of Schiller, some of whom have narrowed the conditions of the term so far, as to find but three _men of genius_ since the world was created: Homer, Shakspeare, and Goethe!"