[of-ee-yoo-kuh s, oh-fee-]
noun, genitive Oph·i·u·chi [of-ee-yoo-kahy, oh-fee-] /ˌɒf iˈyu kaɪ, ˌoʊ fi-/. Astronomy.
  1. the Serpent Bearer, a constellation on the celestial equator between Libra and Aquila.
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Examples from the Web for ophiuchus

Historical Examples of ophiuchus

  • And so they were utterly defeated at the Battle of Ophiuchus.

    A Question of Courage

    Jesse Franklin Bone

  • Its place was near the heel of the right foot of 'Ophiuchus huge.'

  • Ophiuchus is thus represented as holding the serpent with both hands.

    Astronomy for Young Folks

    Isabel Martin Lewis

  • The children did, and placed pebbles for the head and shoulders of Ophiuchus.

    The Star People

    Gaylord Johnson

  • It is writhing in the hands of Ophiuchus, the old man who is called ‘The Serpent-bearer.’

    The Star People

    Gaylord Johnson

British Dictionary definitions for ophiuchus


noun Latin genitive Ophiuchi (ɒˈfjuːkaɪ)
  1. a large constellation lying on the celestial equator between Hercules and Scorpius and containing the dark nebula, Ophiuchus Nebula

Word Origin for Ophiuchus

C17: via Latin from Greek Ophioukhos, from ophis snake + ekhein to hold
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 ophiuchus


constellation (representing Aesculapius), 1650s, from Latin, from Greek ophioukhos, literally "holding a serpent," from ophis "serpent" (see ophio-) + stem of ekhein "to hold, have, keep" (see scheme (n.)). The constellation is equatorial, and Milton's "Ophiuchus huge in th' Arctick Sky" ("Paradise Lost") is a rare lapse for a poet who generally knew his astronomy.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper