from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Excessive in quantity; superabundant: "this successful industry of England, with its plethoric wealth” ( Thomas Carlyle).
  • adj. Excessive in style; turgid: plethoric prose.
  • adj. Characterized by an overabundance of blood.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. overabundant or rife
  • adj. excessive
  • adj. ruddy in complexion
  • adj. Containing excessive blood

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Haeving a full habit of body; characterized by plethora or excess of blood; ; -- used also metaphorically.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Having a full habit of body, or the vessels overcharged with fluids; characterized by plethora, in any sense.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. excessively abundant


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Anthony Powell's "A Dance to the Music of Time" can be accurately described as plethoric Proust.

    Not Your Mom's Book Club

  • But the drug is contraindicated in cases associated with cerebral hyperaemia, in atheromatous conditions of the arteries, and in the so-called plethoric state -- _Beta's

    Scientific American Supplement, No. 299, September 24, 1881

  • In what is called a plethoric state, or too great fulness of the body, it is likewise dangerous to use the cold bath without due preparation.

    The Book of Sports: Containing Out-door Sports, Amusements and Recreations, Including Gymnastics, Gardening & Carpentering

  • He stood up, shook my hand, and emptied his plethoric vest pocket.

    Local Color

  • Concerning further details deponent sayeth not, though he may hint that some of his plethoric national patriotism simmered down and leaked out of the bottom of his soul somewhere -- at least, since that experience he finds that he cares more for men and women and little children than for imaginary geographical lines.


  • And I did these things, not that I was an egotist, not that I was impervious to the critical glances of my fellows, but because of a certain hogskin belt, plethoric and sweat-bewrinkled, which buckled next the skin above the hips.

    The Dignity of Dollars

  • The sweat of months was upon it, toil had defaced it, and it was not a creation such as would appeal to the aesthetic mind; but it was plethoric.

    The Dignity of Dollars

  • His leathern breeches were faultless in make, his jockey boots spotless in the varnish, and a handsome and flourishing pair of boot-garters, as they are called, united the one part of his garments to the other; in fine, a richly-laced scarlet waistcoat and a purple coat set off the neat though corpulent figure of the little man, and threw an additional bloom upon his plethoric aspect.


  • Or again, in a plethoric condition of the corn and wine market these fruits of the soil will be so depreciated in value that the particular husbandries cease to be remunerative, and many a farmer will give up his tillage of the soil and betake himself to the business of a merchant, or of a shopkeeper, to banking or money-lending.

    Ways and Means

  • The Major, for his part, was in a state of plethoric satisfaction that knew no bounds: and he coughed, and choked, and chuckled, and gasped, and swelled, until the waiters seemed positively afraid of him.

    Dombey and Son


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Like a plethoric burning martyr, or a self-consuming misanthrope, once ignited, the whale supplies his own fuel and burns by his own body.

    - Melville, Moby-Dick, ch. 95

    July 29, 2008

  • Van remembered that Mr. Alexander Screepatch, the new president of the United Americas, a plethoric Russian, had flown over to see King victor; and he correctly concluded that both were now sunk in mollitude.

    - Nabokov, Ada, or Ardor

    June 5, 2008

  • "...he did not like either the look or the feel of his patient's belly, and since Fox was somewhat plethoric he decided to bleed and purge him."

    --Patrick O'Brian, The Thirteen Gun Salute, 165

    March 4, 2008

  • from Trollope

    October 1, 2007