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Silenus

or Si·le·nos, Sei·le·nos

[sahy-lee-nuh s]
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noun, plural Si·le·ni [sahy-lee-nahy] /saɪˈli naɪ/ for 2. Classical Mythology.
  1. a forest spirit, sometimes referred to as the oldest of the satyrs and the foster father, teacher, and companion of Dionysus: often represented as a bearded old man.
  2. (lowercase) any of a group of forest spirits similar to satyrs: often represented as a drunken old man with the legs and ears of a horse.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for silenus

Historical Examples

  • Comrade Ossipon, nicknamed the Doctor, went out of the Silenus beer-hall.

    The Secret Agent

    Joseph Conrad

  • It was Silenus, a teacher whose fame had gone through all the world.

    Classic Myths

    Mary Catherine Judd

  • For ten days there was feasting and games in the palace in honor of Silenus.

    Classic Myths

    Mary Catherine Judd

  • A satyr lifts her vest, while Silenus and other figures look on in admiration.

  • The beautiful statuette of Silenus, already described, was found in this house.


British Dictionary definitions for silenus

Silenus

noun Greek myth
  1. chief of the satyrs and foster father to Dionysus: often depicted riding drunkenly on a donkey
  2. plural Sileni (saɪˈliːnəɪ) (often not capital) one of a class of woodland deities, closely similar to the satyrs
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 silenus

Silenus

1710, from Greek Seilenos, foster-father of Bacchus and leader of the satyrs; the name is of unknown origin (Klein compares Thracian zilai "wine").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

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