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arete

[ ahr-i-tey ]
/ ˌɑr ɪˈteɪ /
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noun
the aggregate of qualities, as valor and virtue, making up good character: Our greatest national heroes not only did extraordinary things, but had enormous arete.

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Origin of arete

First recorded in 1550–70; from Greek aretḗ “excellence, virtue”

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH arete

arete , arête

Other definitions for arete (2 of 2)

arête
[ uh-reyt ]
/ əˈreɪt /

noun Physical Geography, Geology.
a sharp rugged mountain ridge, produced by glaciation.

Origin of arête

First recorded in 1860–65; from French: literally, “fishbone, ridge, bridge (of the nose),” from Old French areste “sharp ridge,” from Latin arista “ear of grain (wheat), awn”

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH arête

arete, arête
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use arete in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for arete

arête
/ (əˈreɪt, əˈrɛt) /

noun
a sharp ridge separating two cirques or glacial valleys in mountainous regions

Word Origin for arête

C19: from French: fishbone, backbone (of a fish), ridge, sharp edge, from Latin arista ear of corn, fishbone
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

Scientific definitions for arete

arête
[ ə-rāt ]

A sharp, narrow ridge or spur commonly found above the snow line in mountainous areas that have been sculpted by glaciers. Arêtes form as the result of the continued backward erosion of adjoining cirques.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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