- Also Kalypso. Classical Mythology. a sea nymph who detained Odysseus on the island of Ogygia for seven years.
- (lowercase) Also called fairy-slipper. a terrestrial orchid, Calypso bulbosa, of the Northern Hemisphere, having a single variegated purple, yellow, and white flower.
- (lowercase) a musical style of West Indian origin, influenced by jazz, usually having topical, often improvised, lyrics.
- (lowercase) to sing or dance to calypso.
Origin of Calypso
- a performer or writer of calypsos
- a popular type of satirical, usually topical, West Indian ballad, esp from Trinidad, usually extemporized to a percussive syncopated accompaniment
- a dance done to the rhythm of this song
- a rare N temperate orchid, Calypso (or Cytherea) bulbosa, whose flower is pink or white with purple and yellow markings
- Greek myth (in Homer's Odyssey) a sea nymph who detained Odysseus on the island of Ogygia for seven years
Word Origin and History for calypsonian
sea nymph in the "Odyssey," literally "hidden, hider" (perhaps originally a death goddess) from Greek kalyptein "to cover, conceal," from PIE *kel- "to cover, conceal, save," root of English Hell (see cell). The West Indian type of song is so called from 1934, of unknown origin or connection to the nymph.