Definition of synoptic in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /səˈnäptik/


1Of or forming a general summary or synopsis: a synoptic outline of the contents
More example sentences
  • The chapter seems more like a review than a synthesis, and I found myself more than once wishing for a more crisp, synoptic summary of the primary arguments of the schools and of the chapter.
  • The final volume includes a directory of the 1400 contributors, a synoptic outline of contents, and a 61-page index.
  • We have written a brief synoptic introduction to each of the parts.
1.1Taking or involving a comprehensive mental view: a synoptic model of higher education
More example sentences
  • Finally, our model provides a more synoptic view of pilferage effects than found in any of these previous papers.
  • Oracles become quite different things when they are removed from live time, and viewed under a synoptic gaze in the dead time of history now passed, in closed narratives, done and dusted, with closing credits and ‘The End’ at the end.
  • As expected, both gastropods and bivalves show remarkably similar Ordovician diversity trajectories on a global scale, thus lending support to the synoptic model of global evolutionary faunas.
2Relating to the Synoptic Gospels.
Example sentences
  • In John, although there are a few parabolic sayings, there are no parables comparable with the synoptic tradition.
  • Nevertheless, this impressive volume is another significant step forward in the challenge to the hegemony of ‘the Two Document hypothesis’ in synoptic studies.
  • These highly Lucan traditions about Mary do not prevent him from inserting in another place the synoptic tradition valuing Mary on a different, common ground.


The Synoptic Gospels.
Example sentences
  • In the Synoptics, the most characteristic form is the parable: a fresh, pithy, and often paradoxical story set in the everyday world of Jesus' time, and used above all to develop Jesus' key theme: the kingdom of God.
  • A related argument in this regard is that only John's Gospel portrays Jesus as claiming to be God; and since it is later than the Synoptics, the claims are the result of an evolution in Christian theology.
  • When God speaks in the Synoptics, God too uses ‘Bible-speak.’



Example sentences
  • The Earth's rotation regimes coincide with tide fluctuations and synoptical processes in the atmosphere.
  • Lowry's interpretation of his liberal education in support of personal motives illustrates the privilege embedded in the synoptical perspective that Iola adopts.
  • But as soon as participant data become available, the synoptical data are replaced.


Pronunciation: /-ik(ə)lē/
Example sentences
  • The need to synoptically characterize physical and biological properties of this large, inhospitable and remote ocean over long time periods leads to the use of satellite data.
  • Only these ‘smart’ systems can allow us to think and act synoptically on a planetary scale.
  • The book concludes with an examination of applied ecology and of popular culture, again necessarily synoptically.


Early 17th century: from Greek sunoptikos, from sunopsis (see synopsis).

Words that rhyme with synoptic

Coptic, optic, panoptic

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: syn·op·tic

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Related Words