A philomath (//; Greek: φίλος philos ("beloved," "loving," as in philosophy or philanthropy) + Greek μανθάνειν manthanein, math- ("to learn," as in polymath)) is a lover of learning. Philomathy is similar to, but distinguished from, philosophy in that -soph, the latter suffix, specifies "wisdom" or "knowledge", rather than the process of acquisition thereof.
Philomath is not synonymous with polymath. A philomath is a seeker of knowledge and facts, while a polymath is a possessor of knowledge in multiple fields.
The shift in meaning for mathema is likely a result of the rapid categorization during the time of Plato and Aristotle of their "mathemata" in terms of education: arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, and music (the Quadrivium), which the Greeks found to create a "natural grouping" of mathematical (in the modern usage; "doctrina mathematica" in the ancient usage) precepts.
- Philomaths, Polish secret student organization that existed, 1817-23, at the Imperial University of Vilnius.
- Philomathean Society, a literary society at the University of Pennsylvania
- Benjamin Franklin, who used this pen-name