pedant

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • n pedant a person who pays more attention to formal rules and book learning than they merit
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Pedant A schoolmaster; a pedagogue. "This was Abel Sampson, commonly called, from occupation as a pedagogue, Dominie Sampson.""A pedant that keeps a school i'th' church."
    • Pedant One who puts on an air of learning; one who makes a vain display of learning; a pretender to superior knowledge. "A scholar, yet surely no pedant , was he."
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n pedant A schoolmaster; a teacher; a pedagogue.
    • n pedant A person who overrates erudition, or lays an undue stress on exact knowledge of detail or of trifles, as compared with larger matters or with general principles; also, one who makes an undue or inappropriate display of learning.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Pedant ped′ant one who makes a vain display of learning: a pretender to knowledge which he does not possess:
    • n Pedant ped′ant (Shak.) a pedagogue
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Quotations

  • William Congreve
    William%20Congreve
    “'Tis well enough for a servant to be bred at an University. But the education is a little too pedantic for a gentleman.”
  • Desiderius Erasmus
    Desiderius%20Erasmus
    “Nothing is as peevish and pedantic as men's judgments of one another.”
  • Oliver Wendell Holmes
    Oliver%20Wendell%20Holmes
    “Do not be bullied out of your common sense by the specialist; two to one, he is a pedant.”
  • Johann Kaspar Lavater
    Johann%20Kaspar%20Lavater
    “Have you ever seen a pedant with a warm heart?”
  • Confucius
    Confucius
    “When nature exceeds culture, we have the rustic. When culture exceeds nature then we the pedant.”

Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. pédant, It. pedante, fr. Gr. paidey`ein to instruct, from pai^s boy. See Pedagogue
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr.,—It. pedante—L. pædagogans, -antis, teaching—pædagogus, a pedagogue.

Usage

In literature:

You say it is flippant, affected, pedantic.
"Great Pictures, As Seen and Described by Famous Writers"
It is a whimsical tale of a no less whimsical revenge taken upon a piece of pedantic lumber, the name of which is given in the title.
"An Introduction to the Study of Browning" by Arthur Symons
Wits mingled with pedants, courtiers with poets.
"The Wits and Beaux of Society" by Grace Wharton and Philip Wharton
He who has no sense for the symbolical has none for antiquity: let pedantic philologists bear this in mind.
"We Philologists, Volume 8 (of 18)" by Friedrich Nietzsche
When it came to putting this into practice tones were combined in a pedantic fashion.
"For Every Music Lover" by Aubertine Woodward Moore
The first was a pedant.
"Orange and Green" by G. A. Henty
It would be pedantic, however, to insist always upon the latter condition.
"Ontario Normal School Manuals: Science of Education" by Ontario Ministry of Education
There were no petty inquiries or pedantic regulations.
"Elsie Inglis" by Eva Shaw McLaren
He read Latin, and still more Greek, not in the spirit of a pedant or a pedagogue, but genuinely for pleasure and refreshment.
"Some Diversions of a Man of Letters" by Edmund William Gosse
Pedants always admire pedants.
"Post-Prandial Philosophy" by Grant Allen
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In poetry:

Ay! Heaven had set one living man
Beyond the pedant's tether,--
His virtues, frailties, HE may scan,
Who weighs them all together!
"For The Burns Centennial Celebration" by Oliver Wendell Holmes
Oh! ever keep thy native ease,
By no pedantic law confined;
For Laura's voice is form'd to please,
So Laura's words be not unkind.
"Ode to a Young Lady" by William Shenstone
How could he bear the pedant's frown,
That frights the sad bewilder'd boy,
Or hear such words as verb and noun,
But for my tales of love and joy?
"Hope And Memory" by Joanna Baillie
Pedant's presumptuous voice no more
Vexes the spot where Caesar trod,
And o'er the pavement's soundless floor
Come banished priest and exiled God.
"The Door Of Humility" by Alfred Austin
So die, thou child of stormy dawn,
Thou winter flower, forlorn of nurse;
Chilled early by the bigot's curse,
The pedant's frown, the worldling's yawn.
"On The Death of A Certain Journal" by Charles Kingsley
Pedant it cannot, villain cannot be!
Some genius, may-be, his own symbol woke;
But puritan, nor rogue in virtue's cloke,
Nor kitchen-maid has done it certainly!
"Who Lights The Fire?" by George MacDonald

In news:

" In the course of an afternoon's tour of the city, Lorca had been pedantic, vain, and egotistical, giving his companion the impression that "Spanish poetry began and ended with him.
A good scholar is prized for multilingual fluency, doggedness, a pedant's delight in small corrections, and a refusal to draw a conclusion unless it is based upon evidence sifted according to a rigorous precedent.
Variety vs varietal , Pedants vs poseurs.
The repeating sequences at the heart of Bach 's musical constructions can seem like the work of a master builder or a pedant.
Given his pedantic speaking style, his downward gaze and his utter lack of enthusiasm, he might as well have tapped the mic and asked the signature bombing question: "Is this on".
Pedantic pundit and fingernails on a blackboard screaming scourge of anyone politically left of King George the Third.
Try out -of-touch pedants.
Yesterday, March 4, marked the first "National Grammar Day," created by the nit-picking pedants of the Society for the Promotion of Good Grammar and sponsored by Microsoft's Encarta.
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In science:

The lowest energy state (free energy, to be pedantic) for a large cube of brittle material under external strain can easily be seen to be broken in two.
Formal Considerations about Fracture: Nucleation and Growth
To spell this out pedantically, let I ′ = µ(S )I = {µ(S )n : n ∈ I }, let µ′ = µ/µ(S ) be the normalized version of the measure µ, and let V ′ be the generalized vertex space (S , µ′ , (ym )m∈I ′ ) defined by ym = xm/µ(S ) , so the sequences (xn ) and (ym ) are identical except for our rescaling of the index set.
The phase transition in inhomogeneous random graphs
Now ζ (t) := ΩΛ /Ωm is a unique function of t — or, if one wishes to be pedantic, of t/τΛ .
A Reply to a Comment on "Dark matter: A phenomenological existence proof"
Hence, P(G(C )) ≥ 2P(B (C )), and there is some event G′ (C ) ⊂ G(C ) \ B (C ) with probability P(B (C )). [To be pedantic, we must modify our probability space at this point.
Percolation on random Johnson-Mehl tessellations and related models
Of course this is a rather pedantic definition as this clearly does not represent an ob ject of common mathematical interest.
A canonical form for some piecewise defined functions
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