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[nahy-oh-bee] /ˈnaɪ oʊˌbi/
noun, Classical Mythology.
the daughter of Tantalus and wife of Amphion of Thebes. She provoked Apollo and Artemis to vengeance by taunting their mother, Leto, with the number and beauty of her own children; Niobe's children were slain and Zeus turned her into stone, in which state she continued to weep over her loss.
Related forms
Niobean, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for Niobe
Historical Examples
  • I ought to be a Dido and Niobe and Cassandra rolled into one.

    It Happened in Egypt C. N. Williamson
  • Niobe would have made the response with a greater show of cheer.

    The Fortune Hunter Louis Joseph Vance
  • Perhaps the fate of Niobe is no fable, but a type of the callousness of our nature.

    Vivian Grey Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli
  • Her sister stood erect in grief like a daughter of Niobe wept into stone.

    In a Little Town Rupert Hughes
  • I always think what a guy Niobe must have been if she was indeed all tears.

    Molly Bawn Margaret Wolfe Hamilton
  • Even in our own day there are mortal mothers who feel as Niobe felt.

    A Book of Myths Jean Lang
  • Loudly did she proclaim her proud belief, and when Niobe heard it she laughed in scorn.

    A Book of Myths Jean Lang
  • And the sight of them brought a ray of joy to Niobe's white face.

  • Leave me only this one,” cried Niobe, “just the youngest of so many.

  • This arrangement we meet with in the maidens of the Parthenon frieze and in a bust of Niobe.

    Museum of Antiquity L. W. Yaggy
British Dictionary definitions for Niobe


(Greek myth) a daughter of Tantalus, whose children were slain after she boasted of them: although turned into stone, she continued to weep
Derived Forms
Niobean (naɪˈəʊbɪən) 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 Niobe

in Greek mythology, a queen of Thebes, daughter of Tantalus, changed to a stone while weeping for her children (slain, after she boasted of them overmuch, by Artemis and Apollo); hence the name is used figuratively for bereavement and woe. The name is said to mean literally "snowy; snowy-bright."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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