Noun – Multiplicity
We took the word “multiplicity” from a Latin one meaning “a state of being many times as great in number.” More literally, its roots mean “something with many folds.”
In English, a multiplicity of things is a large number of them.
Or, it’s a state of having many different kinds, instead of just one kind.
Part of speech:
Often the countable kind: “There’s a multiplicity of causes.”
Also, in a fun twist of irony, the uncountable kind: “There is multiplicity in play here;” “the poem’s multiplicity;” “her multiplicity of identities.”
The only common one we’ll bump into is the plural, “multiplicities.” There’s also a rare adjective, “multiplicious.”
how to use it:
Pick the dramatic word “multiplicity” when you need to emphasize just how many of something there is–especially when people might assume that there’s just one.
You might talk about a multiplicity of ideas, theories, perspectives, emotions, forms, issues, problems, opportunities, possibilities, identities, etc.
“(Indian) is a cuisine defined by its multiplicity. It is many cuisines in one, each resisting generalization and abridgment.”
— Tejal Rao, New York Times, 9 March 2020
“When social media first appeared, its value seemed to be participatory. This was the radical promise, that it would open up the world to a multiplicity of voices. And it has. Many more people now have a voice than did.”
— Emma Brockes, The Guardian, 14 June 2017