• synonyms


or ae·ol·i·pyle, e·ol·i·pile

See more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
  1. a round vessel caused to rotate by the force of tangentially escaping steam: an early example of jet propulsion.
  2. a device for injecting the vapors of heated alcohol into a laboratory furnace.

Origin of aeolipile

1650–60; < Latin aeolīpilae balls of Aeolus, alteration of aeolīpylae gates of Aeolus, equivalent to Aeolī (genitive singular of Aeolus) + pylae, plural of pyla < Greek pýlē gate
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for aeolipile

Historical Examples

  • Some late authors have discovered the extraordinary use to which the frauds of the heathen priesthood applied the Aeolipile, viz.

    The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction


  • The Verbiest model was for a four-wheeled carriage, on which an aeolipile was mounted with a pan of burning coals beneath it.

    Automobile Biographies</p>

    Lyman Horace Weeks

  • Another orifice in the aeolipile was fitted with a reed, so that the steam going through it imitated the song of a bird.

    Automobile Biographies</p>

    Lyman Horace Weeks

British Dictionary definitions for aeolipile


  1. a device illustrating the reactive forces of a gas jet: usually a spherical vessel mounted so as to rotate and equipped with angled exit pipes from which steam within it escapes

Word Origin

C17: from Latin aeolīpilae balls of Aeolus or aeolīpylae gates of Aeolus
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

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