Part of speech: noun
Origin: Latin, 19th century
A tightrope walker
One who demonstrates mental agility
Examples of Funambulist in a sentence
"The star of the circus was the funambulist dancing high above the crowd on a tightrope."
"He earned his reputation as a funambulist by winning the trivia competition 10 weeks in a row."
Popularity Over Time
The literal definition of "funambulist" is tightrope walker. In Latin, "funis" means rope and "ambulare" is to walk. In ancient Rome, tightrope walking was a popular sight at public markets and gatherings. Today, you could see a funambulist at the circus, or you could use the figurative meaning to describe anyone with skilled mental prowess.
Did you Know?
Funambulists aren’t just limited to the big top. Philippe Petit is a French high-wire artist who gained notoriety in the 1970s by walking wires stretched between the towers of the Notre Dame Cathedral and the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. This skilled funambulist was profiled in the Oscar-winning documentary “Man on Wire.”