• synonyms


noun (used with a plural verb)
  1. Astronomy. a group of stars comprising a moving cluster in the constellation Taurus, supposed by the ancients to indicate the approach of rain when they rose with the sun.
  2. Classical Mythology. a group of nymphs and sisters of the Pleiades who nurtured the infant Dionysus and were placed among the stars as a reward.
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Also Hy·ads [hahy-adz] /ˈhaɪ ædz/.

Origin of Hyades

1350–1400; Middle English Hiades < Latin < Greek, equivalent to hý(ein) to rain + -ades, plural of -as -ad1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for hyades



Hyads (ˈhaɪædz)

pl n
  1. an open cluster of stars in the constellation TaurusCompare Pleiades 1
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Word Origin for Hyades

C16: via Latin from Greek huades, perhaps from huein to rain


pl n
  1. Greek myth seven nymphs, daughters of Atlas, whom Zeus placed among the stars after death
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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 hyades


star cluster in constellation Taurus, late 14c., from Greek Hyades, popularly explained as "rain-bringers" (from hyein "to rain"), because wet weather supposedly began coincidentally with their heliacal rising, but in fact probably from hys "swine" (the popular Latin word for them was Suculae "little pigs"). Grimm ("Teutonic Mythology") lists the Anglo-Saxon glosses of Hyades as Raedgastran, Raedgasnan, Redgaesrum.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper