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[ded-l-uh s or, esp. British, deed-l-uh s] /ˈdɛd l əs or, esp. British, ˈdid l əs/
noun, Classical Mythology.
an Athenian architect who built the labyrinth for Minos and made wings for himself and his son Icarus to escape from Crete.
Origin of Daedalus
< Latin < Greek Daídalos; see daedal
Related forms
Daedalian, Daedalean
[dih-dey-lee-uh n, -deyl-yuh n] /dɪˈdeɪ li ən, -ˈdeɪl yən/ (Show IPA),
[dih-dal-ik] /dɪˈdæl ɪk/ (Show IPA),
adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for Daedalus
Historical Examples
  • He fell like a leaf tossed down the wind, down, down, with one cry that overtook Daedalus far away.

    Old Greek Folk Stories Told Anew Josephine Preston Peabody
  • But Daedalus, instead of being proud of his nephew, was angrier than before.

    Classic Myths Mary Catherine Judd
  • Come down, silly Daedalus; come down to the lowly places in which Nature ordered you to walk.

    The Paris Sketch Book of Mr. M. A. Titmarsh William Makepeace Thackeray
  • Daedalus essayed the empty air with wings not permitted to man.

  • Furthermore he wrought a green, like that which Daedalus once made in Cnossus for lovely Ariadne.

    The Iliad Homer
  • The partridge flies low because Daedalus (who had seen his son Icarus perish through a lofty flight) was changed into a partridge.

  • As the lame smith he reminds us of Hephaestus, and in his flight with wings of Daedalus escaping from Minos.

  • That Daedalus was a very cunning workman; but of all his artful contrivances, this labyrinth is the most wondrous.

    Tanglewood Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • Before the sun came out, Daedalus told his boy to be careful to keep near him.

    Classic Myths Mary Catherine Judd
  • Among all those mortals who grew so wise that they learned the secrets of the gods, none was more cunning than Daedalus.

    Old Greek Folk Stories Told Anew Josephine Preston Peabody
British Dictionary definitions for Daedalus


(Greek myth) an Athenian architect and inventor who built the labyrinth for Minos on Crete and fashioned wings for himself and his son Icarus to flee the island
Derived Forms
Daedalian, Daedalean (dɪˈdeɪlɪən), Daedalic (dɪˈdælɪk) adjective
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 Daedalus

father of Icarus in Greek mythology, builder of the Cretan labyrinth, from Greek Daidalos, literally "the cunning worker," from daidallein "to work artfully."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Daedalus in Culture
Daedalus [(deed-uh-luhs)]

In classical mythology, an ingenious inventor, designer of the Labyrinth, and one of the few to escape from it. He was the father of Icarus.

Note: Daedalus is a symbol of inventiveness and craftsmanship.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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