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[ahr-guh-nawt, -not] /ˈɑr gəˌnɔt, -ˌnɒt/
Classical Mythology. a member of the band of men who sailed to Colchis with Jason in the ship Argo in search of the Golden Fleece.
(sometimes lowercase) a person in quest of something dangerous but rewarding; adventurer.
a person who moved to California during the gold rush of 1849.
(lowercase) paper nautilus.
Origin of Argonaut
< Latin Argonauta < Greek Argonaútēs crewman of the ship Argo; see nautical
Related forms
Argonautic, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for Argonaut
Historical Examples
  • Inconspicuously I stepped into the Argonaut and up the stairs to Blythe's room.

    The Pirate of Panama William MacLeod Raine
  • A week's journey from the settlements showed the Argonaut a new world.

    The Story of the Outlaw Emerson Hough
  • On her desk lay her own neat copy of the story which she was preparing for the Argonaut.

    The Time of Roses

    L. T. Meade
  • We have not spoken of the Chancellor as an Argonaut, of the Chancellor as a colonizer.

    The Arena Various
  • All first experiences, however, have not been so pleasant as that of the Argonaut's trial.

  • It had wheels underneath so that it could be towed on the bottom by the Argonaut.

  • Every Argonaut, indeed, was a kind of explorer as well as seeker of gold.

    Theodore Watts-Dunton James Douglas
  • Indeed, the Argonaut is more properly a "sea motorcycle" than a "boat."

    Aircraft and Submarines Willis J. Abbot.
  • He was the son of an Argonaut who had been reckless in business and most indulgent to his boy.

    The Comstock Club Charles Carroll Goodwin
  • We waited through the day and into the sable night, but the Argonaut did not return.

    The Peacemaker Alfred Coppel
British Dictionary definitions for Argonaut


(Greek myth) one of the heroes who sailed with Jason in quest of the Golden Fleece
a person who took part in the Californian gold rush of 1849
another name for the paper nautilus
Derived Forms
Argonautic, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Greek Argonautēs, from Argō the name of Jason's ship + nautēs sailor
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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Word Origin and History for Argonaut

"sailor of the Argo," 1580s (implied in argonautic), from Argo + Greek nautes "sailor" (see naval). Adventurers in the California Gold Rush of 1848 were called argonauts (because they sought the golden fleece) by those who stayed home.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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