Range, scope, the boundary of something. Can be used to mean the extent of influence of a person or thing.
Late Middle English; the first known use of the word was in 1597. The word, which comes from the Latin “ambitus,” meaning circuit, and “ambire,” which means to go around, is rarely used today.
Why this word?
The word “ambit” has an academic, slightly high-class feel about it. It’s an excellent substitute for your usual “reach” or “limit,” as well as being a useful addition to your vocabulary.
“Ambit” also has a somewhat more specific meaning than similar words. While other words like “range” or “reach” mean a sort of general extent, “ambit” means the reach or scope of influence of a particular thing or person. So next time you’re about to say something along the lines of “Check out the reach of that guy’s influence,” save yourself a few words and say “ambit” instead.
How to use Ambit?
This word works great for when you’re talking about a person or thing’s influence or authority. “The proposed law would have too wide an ambit.” “He was overstepping the ambit of his authority in that matter.”