Etymology
Advertisement
enlightened (adj.)
1630s, "illuminated;" 1660s in the sense "well-informed;" past-participle adjective from enlighten.
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
enlighten (v.)

late 14c., "to remove the dimness or blindness" (usually figurative, from one's eyes or heart); see en- (1) + lighten (v.2). From 1660s as "supply with intellectual light." Literal senses are later and less common in English: "put light in" is from 1580s; "shed light upon" is from 1610s. Related: Enlightened; enlightening. Old English had inlihtan "to illuminate, enlighten."

Related entries & more 
Meiji 

"period of rule of emperor Mutsuhito" (1868-1912), which was marked by modernization and Westernization, 1873, from Japanese, said to mean literally "enlightened government."

Related entries & more 
logocracy (n.)

"system of government in which words are the ruling powers," 1804; see logo- + -cracy "rule or government by." Popularized by Washington Irving.

In this country [America] every man adopts some particular slang-whanger as the standard of his judgment, and reads everything he writes, if he reads nothing else: which is doubtless the reason why the people of this logocracy are so marvellously enlightened. [Irving, "Salmagundi," 1821]
Related entries & more 
Buddha (n.)
an epithet applied to the historical founder of Buddhism, 1680s, from Pali, literally "awakened, enlightened," past participle of budh "to awake, know, perceive," which is related to Sanskrit bodhati "is awake, observes, understands," from PIE root *bheudh- "be aware, make aware." Title given by his adherents to the man who taught this path, Siddhartha Gautama, also known to them as Sakyamuni "Sage of the Sakyas" (his family clan), who lived in northern India 5c. B.C.E.
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
*bheudh- 

Proto-Indo-European root meaning "be aware, make aware."

It forms all or part of: beadle; bid; bo tree; bode; Bodhisattva; Buddha; forbid; foreboding; ombudsman; verboten.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit bodhati "is awake, is watchful, observes," buddhah "awakened, enlightened;" Old Church Slavonic bljudǫ  "to observe;" Lithuanian budėti "to be awake;" Old Irish buide "contentment, thanks;" Old English bodian "proclaim, announce; foretell," boda "messenger."

Related entries & more 
illuminati (n.)
1590s, plural of Latin illuminatus "enlightened" (in figurative sense), past participle of illuminare "light up, make light, illuminate" (see illumination). Originally a name applied to a 16c. Spanish sect (the Alumbrados), then to other sects on the continent; since 1797 used as a translation of German Illuminaten, name of a secret society founded 1776 in Ingolstadt, Bavaria, (repressed there 1785) and holding deistic and republican principles; hence used generally of free-thinkers and sarcastically of those professing intellectual enlightenment (1816). Related: Illuminatism; illuminatist.
Related entries & more 
politician (n.)

1580s, "person skilled in politics;" see politics + -ian. Especially "one engaged in party politics, especially as a trade; one who promotes the interests of a political party," and thus it quickly took on overtones, not typically good ones: "one concerned with public affairs for the sake of profit or of a clique." Johnson defines it as "A man of artifice; one of deep contrivance."

The notion of enlightened, disinterested, and high-minded service to the state goes with statesman (Century Dictionary notes that "A man, however, would not properly be called a statesman unless he were also of eminent ability in public affairs"). For "student of political science," by way of distinction, politicist (1869) has been used.

Related entries & more 
canny (adj.)

"knowing, wise," 1630s, from a Scottish and northern English formation from can (v.1) in its sense of "know how to," + -y (2). A doublet of cunning that flowered into distinct senses in Scottish English. In the glossary to Scott's "Heart of Mid-Lothian" (1818) uncanny is defined as "dangerous," while canny, as used in the tale, is defined as "skilful, prudent, lucky ; in a superstitious sense, good-conditioned, and safe to deal with ; trustworthy ; quiet." Cannily is "gently" and canny moment is "an opportune or happy time."

"Knowing," hence, from 18c., "careful, skillful, clever," also "frugal, thrifty," and, from early 19c. (perhaps via Scott's novels) "cautious, wary, shrewd." Often used superciliously of Scots by their southern neighbors (and their American cousins).

The Canny Scot is so well known as scarcely to require description. He carries caution, cunning, and selfishness to excess. Deceitful when a purpose is to be accomplished, he is not habitually deceitful. One thing he never loses sight of—his own interest. But of his own interest he is not the most enlightened judge. ["The Natural History of Scotsmen," in The Argosy, December 1865]

Related: Cannily; canniness.

Related entries & more 
reason (n.)

c. 1200, resoun, "the intellectual faculty that adopts actions to ends," also "statement in an argument, statement of explanation or justification," from Anglo-French resoun, Old French raison "course; matter; subject; language, speech; thought, opinion," from Latin rationem (nominative ratio) "reckoning, understanding, motive, cause," from ratus, past participle of reri "to reckon, think" (from PIE root *re- "to reason, count").

Meaning "sanity; degree of intelligence that distinguishes men from brutes" is recorded from late 13c.; that of "that which recommends itself to enlightened intelligence, a reasonable view of a matter" is from c. 1300.

The sense of "grounds for action, motive, cause of an event" is from c. 1300. The Middle English sense of "meaning, signification" (early 14c.) is preserved in the phrase rhyme or reason. Phrase it stands to (or with) reason is from 1520s. A reason of state (1610s) is a purely political grounds for action.

The Enlightenment gave reason its focused sense of "intelligence considered as having universal validity ... so that it is not something that belongs to any person, but is something partaken of, a sort of light in which every mind must perceive" [Century Dictionary]. Reason itself has long been personified, typically as a woman. Age of Reason "the European Enlightenment" is first recorded 1794 as the title of Tom Paine's book. 

Reason is never a root, neither of act nor desire.
[Robinson Jeffers, "Meditation on Saviors"]
Related entries & more