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erudition, erudite - vocabulary

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noun

Erudition: deep, extensive knowledge and learning.

adjective

Erudite: characterized by great knowledge and learning.

[Abraham Lincoln] became an erudite lawyer, one of the best in Illinois, representing important corporations, presenting cases in the State Supreme Court and appearing before the United States Supreme Court. His erudition may have equaled that of many of Ivy League law school graduates.

Lincoln studied English grammar and composition. A copy of a letter he wrote once hung in the Bodleian Library at Oxford, with an inscription below it that read: "The most sublime letter written in the English language." How many courses would Lincoln have needed to write such a letter? Or the Gettysburg address?

—Jules C. Ladenheim Letter to the Editor New York Times, February 13, 1996

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