[ per-uh-hee-lee-uhn, -heel-yuhn ]

noun,plural per·i·he·li·a [per-uh-hee-lee-uh, -heel-yuh]. /ˌpɛr əˈhi li ə, -ˈhil yə/. Astronomy.
  1. the point in the orbit of a planet or comet at which it is nearest to the sun.

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Origin of perihelion

1660–70; <Greek peri-peri- + hḗli(os) sun + -on neuter noun suffix, on the model of perigee; earlier in the New Latin form perihelium

Other words from perihelion

  • per·i·he·li·al, per·i·he·li·an, adjective

Words Nearby perihelion Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use perihelion in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for perihelion


/ (ˌpɛrɪˈhiːlɪən) /

nounplural -lia (-lɪə)
  1. the point in its orbit when a planet or comet is nearest the sun: Compare aphelion

Origin of perihelion

C17: from New Latin perihēlium, from peri- + Greek hēlios sun

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 perihelion


[ pĕr′ə-hēlē-ən ]

  1. The point at which an orbiting object, such as a planet or a comet, is closest to the Sun. Compare aphelion perigee.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.