What is Linguistic Intelligence?

What is Linguistic Intelligence?

Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences includes linguistic intelligence. This level of intellect allows for a more complete and confident command of both spoken and written language.

Harvard psychologist Howard Gardner first introduced the concept of “multiple intelligences” in 1983. He proposed the idea that the intelligence of people is not a single trait, as assessed by IQ testing, but rather a combination of abilities. One of the eight types of intelligence he developed to demonstrate the range of human intelligence was linguistic intelligence.

What is Linguistic Intelligence?

One definition of linguistic intelligence, also known as verbal intelligence, is the capacity to comprehend and reason with linguistically expressed ideas. Linguistic competence is also about being able to use words and their combinations well to understand information, communicate well, and solve problems.

A person of this IQ has a deep familiarity with and proficiency in areas of language study including phonetics, morphology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics. This gives individuals the capability of learning and using language for specific purposes. Those who write, compose poetry, give speeches, practice law, and run for public office all exhibit this level of intelligence.

Famous People With High Verbal Intelligence

TS Elliot

T.S. Elliot is largely recognized as a major contributor to the literary modernism movement and one of the century’s greatest poets. His poetry earned him the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1946.

William Shakespeare

Shakespeare’s name automatically comes to mind when discussing the great works of the English language. For centuries, his works have delighted readers and audiences, earning him the titles of “best English writer” and “finest writer in the world.” On the list of his prolific work, there are 37 plays. 

J.K. Rowling

J.K. Rowling is one of the most successful authors of all time, having sold over 500 million copies of her books. Her fantasy Harry Potter books are widely regarded as masterpieces of creativity and language skill and have gained her a devoted fan base of readers all over the world.


He was a prominent Athenian statesman and the best orator in Greek history. His very insightful speeches provide light on the state of politics and culture at the time. His speeches were so powerful that they moved a whole army to march against Philip of Macedon. 

Operations in Verbal and Linguistic Intelligence

Gardner detailed the functions of language and highlighted its significance for human culture. Using various linguistic phenomena, he illustrated the value of verbal intelligence. Here we have poetry, rhetoric, and explanation.


Poetry shows a high level of language intelligence because it requires knowing how to use the English language. such as a strong understanding of how words work together, an appreciation for the subtleties of word choice, and the ability to put lines together in a way that conveys the poet’s feelings and images with conviction. T.S. Eliot once drew a parallel between how science works and how poetry works with language.


Rhetoric refers to both the art and science of communicating effectively in writing and speech for the purposes of facilitating communication, influencing others and inspiring action. Writing, speaking, and presenting effectively all demand a strong command of the language and its methods. Leaders in politics and the legal profession tend to excel in this area.


Explanation and teaching are fundamental features of the language, and they can take place orally or in written form. Language is used effectively in the forms of instructions, verses, adages, and stories, both written and oral.

Characteristics of verbal-linguistic intelligence

People who have a high level of linguistic intelligence often take to writing as a form of expression and love putting their thoughts down on paper. They are able to pick up on subtleties, have a strong grasp of syntax, and have a wide range of vocabulary. Additionally, they are always on the search for fresh information and books that they will appreciate.

Most people who have a natural talent for language also enjoy doing crossword puzzles, playing word games like Scrabble, and coming up with creative rhymes. They also have excellent memory and can recall even the most complex information and quotations with ease.

Since they are usually curious about new things, they enjoy learning new languages and tend to do it fairly well. They can articulate complex ideas clearly, and they can evaluate and interpret information with ease.

Here are some characteristics that people with high verbal-linguistic intelligence show:

Think in words.

Those who have mastered the art of language have the tools to articulate their ideas through composition, syntax, and the mental visualization of written text. They give structure and substance to inarticulate ideas. They make use of the grammatical structure to set out their thoughts in an organized way.

Have a passion for reading and writing.

They have a fantastic grasp of the written and spoken word. Those who are highly verbal and linguistically intelligent read widely and frequently, taking in many books, short stories, comics, and more each year. They put their thoughts, observations, and emotions down on paper to share with others.

Excellent speakers.

People who excel at verbal-linguistic intelligence are methodical, objective, and selective in their wording. Because they are good with language, they are confident and can take charge of any group with ease.

They are excellent interpreters

Their hobby is giving their own unique interpretations of poems, works, and other literary elements. Logic puzzles, word games, and textual interpretation are all popular leisure activities for them. People with high verbal-linguistic intelligence have little trouble understanding figurative language and metaphors.

Like learning different languages.

Even if they don’t understand the language, they enjoy listening to and watching shows in foreign languages. Those who are highly verbal and linguistically intelligent are always eager to expand their linguistic horizons. Learning a new language is a personal challenge they like taking on.

Strategies and resources employed by those with high verbal-linguistic intelligence:

Read a variety of print media, including books, newspapers, and magazines.

They broaden their understanding of words and how to use them in different contexts as a result of their reading.


They argue for and against their respective perspectives on a certain topic.

Word Games

Playing word games like word searches and crossword puzzles helps them learn new words and learn to recognize them. 


They effectively convey their message through the medium of a podcast by making use of a smart vocabulary and a mastery of the English language. They utilize words to captivate and persuade their audience.


They think that by telling stories, people will be more likely to read and write for fun and to learn. 

In Conclusion

Since the vast majority of people can communicate verbally and a significant percentage can also read and write, verbal-linguistic intelligence is considered one of the so-called “universal intelligences.”

In early childhood, it is crucial for a person’s overall development to prioritize the enhancement of their verbal-linguistic intelligence. In today’s increasingly interconnected world, fluency in speaking and hearing other languages is no longer an option but a necessity for success in all areas of life. These are the kinds of skills that can be taught to young children in and out of the classroom. Problem-solving skills, empathy, and mastery of the language all improve with exposure to more reading, speaking, and listening. Good relationships and effective communication are the results of cultivating this kind of IQ.

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