The Phrontistery

Books by Stephen Chrisomalis
Numerical Notation: A Comparative History Human Expeditions: Inspired by Bruce Trigger


Words of Wisdom

This group of 30 odd 'sophy' and 'sopher' words have in common an etymological derivation from the Greek sophia, meaning 'wisdom'. They refer to an odd group of systems of knowledge, esoteric doctrines, and philosophical practices, most of which are obsolete or extremely rare, with philosophy being the only major exception. Not quite sciences or studies, nor are they isms, they tend to refer to mystical or occult concepts rather than strictly religious or scientific canons of knowledge.


Word Definition
anthroposophy knowledge of the nature of humanity; human wisdom
chirosophy knowledge of palm-reading
cosmosophy knowledge of the cosmos
deipnosophy learned dinner-conversation
demonosopher one who is inspired by a demon or devil
gastrosopher a person skilled in matters of eating
gymnosophy deep contemplation performed while naked
helicosophy geometry that deals with spirals
hypnosophy knowledge of phenomena relating to sleep
misosophy hatred of knowledge or wisdom
morosophy foolish pretence of wisdom
mysteriosophy system of knowledge concerning secrets and mysteries
neutrosophy study of the origin and nature of philosophical neutralities
ontosophy knowledge of being or existence
palaeosophy ancient learning or thought
pansophy universal knowledge
pantosophy universal knowledge; pansophy
philosophy science of knowledge or wisdom
physiophilosophy system of knowledge concerning principles of natural history
physiosophy assumption of knowledge of nature
phytosophy knowledge of plants
pneumatophilosophy philosophy of spirits or the spirit world
pseudosophy pretension to wisdom
psilosophy shallow philosophy; limited knowledge
psychosophy doctrine or theory of the soul
pyrosophy knowledge of the properties of fire
rhabdology knowledge or learning concerning divining rods
sciosophy system of knowledge without basis in science
theanthroposophy system of belief concerning Christ as god and man
theosophy immediate divine illumination or wisdom
zoosophy knowledge or learning concerning animals


I hope you have found this site to be useful. If you have any corrections, additions, or comments, please contact me. Please note that I am not able to respond to all requests. Please consult a major dictionary before e-mailing your query. All material on this page © 1996-2014 Stephen Chrisomalis. Links to this page may be made without permission.

Top of page
Return to the Phrontistery