marathon

[ mar-uh-thon, -thuh n ]
/ ˈmær əˌθɒn, -θən /

noun

a foot race over a course measuring 26 mi. 385 yards (42 km 195 meters).
any long-distance race.
any contest, event, or the like, of great, or greater than normal, length or duration or requiring exceptional endurance: a dance marathon; a sales marathon.

Origin of marathon

1895–1900; allusion to Pheidippides' 26-mi. (42-km) run from Marathon to Athens to carry news of the Greek victory over the Persians in 490 b.c.

Definition for marathon (2 of 2)

Marathon
[ mar-uh-thon ]
/ ˈmær əˌθɒn /

noun

a plain in SE Greece, in Attica: the Athenians defeated the Persians here 490 b.c.
an ancient village that is near this plain.
Classical Mythology. a son of Epopeus and the father of Corinthus.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for marathon

British Dictionary definitions for marathon (1 of 2)

marathon
/ (ˈmærəθən) /

noun

a race on foot of 26 miles 385 yards (42.195 kilometres): an event in the modern Olympics
  1. any long or arduous task, assignment, etc
  2. (as modifier)a marathon effort

Word Origin for marathon

referring to the feat of the messenger who ran more than 20 miles from Marathon to Athens to bring the news of victory in 490 bc

British Dictionary definitions for marathon (2 of 2)

Marathon
/ (ˈmærəθən) /

noun

a plain in Attica northeast of Athens: site of a victory of the Athenians and Plataeans over the Persians (490 bc)
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