cosmopolitan (adj.)

1815, "free from local, provincial, or national prejudices and attachments," from cosmopolite "citizen of the world" (q.v.) on model of metropolitan. From 1833 as "belonging to all parts of the world, limited to no place or society." Meaning "composed of people of all nations, multi-ethnic" is from 1840. The U.S. women's magazine of the same name was first published in 1886.

As a noun, "one who is at home all over the world, a cosmopolite," 1640s. As the name of a vodka-based cocktail popular in 1990s (due to "Sex and the City" TV program) from late 1980s (the drink itself seems to date to the 1970s).

Cosmopolitanism in reference to an ideology that considers all humans as a single community is recorded by 1828. It took on a negative tinge in mid-20c., suggesting an undermining of indigenous and national societies and often tied to the supposed influence of the Jews.

updated on June 26, 2018

Definitions of cosmopolitan from WordNet
cosmopolitan (adj.)
growing or occurring in many parts of the world;
cosmopolitan in distribution
a cosmopolitan herb
Synonyms: widely distributed
cosmopolitan (adj.)
composed of people from or at home in many parts of the world; especially not provincial in attitudes or interests; "his cosmopolitan benevolence impartially extended to all races and to all creeds"- T.B. Macaulay;
the ancient and cosmopolitan societies of Syria and Egypt
that queer, cosmopolitan, rather sinister crowd found around the Marseilles docks
cosmopolitan (adj.)
of worldwide scope or applicability; "the shrewdest political and ecumenical comment of our time"- Christopher Morley;
an issue of cosmopolitan import
Synonyms: ecumenical / oecumenical / general / universal / worldwide / world-wide
cosmopolitan (n.)
a sophisticated person who has travelled in many countries;
Synonyms: cosmopolite
Etymologies are not definitions. From, not affiliated with etymonline.