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Ceres

[seer-eez]
See more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
noun
  1. a pre-Roman goddess of agriculture under whose name the Romans adopted the worship of the Greek goddess Demeter.
  2. Astronomy. the first asteroid to be discovered, being the largest and one of the brightest.
  3. a town in central California.

cere1

[seer]
noun Ornithology.
  1. a fleshy, membranous covering of the base of the upper mandible of a bird, especially a bird of prey or a parrot, through which the nostrils open.

Origin of cere1

1480–90; earlier sere, spelling variant of *cere < Medieval Latin cēra literally, wax < Latin
Related formscered, adjectivecere·less, adjective

cere2

[seer]
verb (used with object), cered, cer·ing.
  1. Archaic. to wrap in or as if in a cerecloth, especially a corpse.
  2. Obsolete. to wax.

Origin of cere2

1375–1425; late Middle English ceren < Latin cērāre to wax, verbal derivative of cēra wax
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for ceres

Historical Examples

  • "You kill me by saying so," cried Ceres, almost ready to faint.

    Tanglewood Tales

    Nathaniel Hawthorne

  • But Ceres shook her head, and hastened away, along with Hecate.

    Tanglewood Tales

    Nathaniel Hawthorne

  • "Proserpina, my beautiful daughter, is gone from me," said Ceres.

    Classic Myths

    Mary Catherine Judd

  • Ceres said no rain should fall till Proserpina came back to her mother.

    Classic Myths

    Mary Catherine Judd

  • They were sometimes celebrated in honor of Jupiter, sometimes of Bacchus, and sometimes of Ceres.


British Dictionary definitions for ceres

Ceres1

noun
  1. the Roman goddess of agricultureGreek counterpart: Demeter

Ceres2

noun
  1. the smallest dwarf planet in the solar system, located in the asteroid belt. It has a diameter of 930 kilometres

cere1

noun
  1. a soft waxy swelling, containing the nostrils, at the base of the upper beak in such birds as the parrot

Word Origin

C15: from Old French cire wax, from Latin cēra

cere2

verb
  1. (tr) to wrap (a corpse) in a cerecloth

Word Origin

C15: from Latin cērāre, from cēra wax
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

Word Origin and History for ceres

Ceres

Roman goddess of agriculture (identified with Greek Demeter), also the name given to the first-found and largest asteroid (discovered 1801); see cereal. Her festival, Cerealia, was April 10.

cere

n.

late 15c., from French cire "wax" (12c.), from Latin cera "wax, wax seal, wax writing tablet," related to Greek keros "beeswax," of unknown origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

ceres in Science

Ceres

[sîrēz]
  1. The closest dwarf planet to the Sun , with an orbit in the asteroid belt. Ceres was the first object in the asteroid belt to be discovered (1801). Initially considered a planet, it was reclassified as an asteroid in the mid-1800s and as a dwarf planet in 2006. It has a diameter of about 960 km (595 mi). See more at dwarf planet.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

ceres in Culture

Ceres

[(seer-eez)]

The Roman name for Demeter, the Greek and Roman goddess of agriculture.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.