[uh-lim-pee-uh n, oh-lim-]


pertaining to Mount Olympus or dwelling thereon, as the gods of classical Greece.
pertaining to Olympia in Elis.
of, resembling, characteristic of, or suitable to the gods of Olympus; majestic or aloof: an Olympian landscape; an Olympian disdain.


an Olympian deity.
a contender in the Olympic Games.
a native or inhabitant of Olympia.

Origin of Olympian

1585–95; < Late Latin Olympiānus, equivalent to Latin Olympi(us) (< Greek Olýmpios, derivative of Ólympos Olympus) + -ānus -an
Related formsO·lym·pi·an·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for olympian

Contemporary Examples of olympian

Historical Examples of olympian

  • One might have been a model for the seraphs of Christian faith, the other an Olympian deity.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • The best of his works is the Olympian Zeus, made at Elis after his exile.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • What an insult should we offer to Olympian runners if we were to put the first last and the last first!



  • Upon this he pushed on into Olympian territory and did sacrifice to Olympian Zeus.



  • To Vernon, who possessed the appetite of the convalescent, the meal was an Olympian feast.

    Nell, of Shorne Mills

    Charles Garvice

British Dictionary definitions for olympian



of or relating to Mount Olympus or to the classical Greek gods
majestic or godlike in manner or bearing
superior to mundane considerations, esp when impractical
of or relating to ancient Olympia or its inhabitants


a god of Olympus
an inhabitant or native of ancient Olympia
mainly US a competitor in the Olympic Games
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 olympian



"of or belonging to Olympus," c.1600; see Olympic + -ian. The noun meaning "a great god of ancient Greece" is attested from 1843, from Late Latin Olympianus, from Greek Olympios "pertaining to Olympus;" sense of "one who competes in the (modern) Olympic Games" is from 1976.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper