I have seen sentences like these:

  1. He’s so versatile an actor.
  2. She’s a versatile entertainer.
  3. The potato is a versatile vegetable.

Can I use versatile in these ways?

  1. She is so versatile.
  2. She is very versatile.

That is, can I use it without mentioning an object or in which platform she is versatile? I want to mean that she can do any work perfectly, like this:

  1. She’s an all rounder.

Is this a correct way to use versatile?

  • Versatile, like unique, isn't usually qualified by 'so' or 'very' but is an absolute. Sep 8, 2022 at 20:10
  • 2
    None of your original sentences are grammatical. You need to either use articles or make the subjects plural. For example, "She's a versatile entertainer" or "Potoatoes are versatile vegetables" or "The potato is a versatile vegetable."
    – Esther
    Sep 8, 2022 at 20:58
  • 1
    It can use intensifiers, no problem. But it can't be done without articles. The first 3 sentences are ungrammatical. And thee last one is very peculiar; if that's a phrase people use around you, go ahead; but I've never heard all rounder, with or without hyphens, with that meaning. Sep 8, 2022 at 20:59
  • I have edited to remove obvious errors that would discourage or divert people from answering.
    – Anton
    Sep 8, 2022 at 22:17

1 Answer 1


You can use "versatile" without saying what they're versatile in, but it might be ambiguous. The reader is forced to make assumptions about what they do. If the context is already apparent, they will probably guess correctly. For instance, if the person is a famous actor, it's obvious that you mean that their acting is versatile. Potatoes are known to be food, so it's clear that this means that it can be used in a wide variety of recipes.

  • The term is also heard as the ability to change roles behind the scenes. Sep 8, 2022 at 22:47
  • 1
    That's part of the context that would have to be apparent.
    – Barmar
    Sep 8, 2022 at 22:48

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