phoenix

or phe·nix

[ fee-niks ]
/ ˈfi nɪks /

noun

(sometimes initial capital letter) a mythical bird of great beauty fabled to live 500 or 600 years in the Arabian wilderness, to burn itself on a funeral pyre, and to rise from its ashes in the freshness of youth and live through another cycle of years: often an emblem of immortality or of reborn idealism or hope.
genitive Phoe·ni·cis [fee-nahy-sis, -nee-] /fiˈnaɪ sɪs, -ˈni-/. (initial capital letter) Astronomy. a southern constellation between Hydrus and Sculptor.
a person or thing of peerless beauty or excellence; paragon.
a person or thing that has become renewed or restored after suffering calamity or apparent annihilation.

Nearby words

  1. phoebe,
  2. phoebean,
  3. phoebus,
  4. phoenicia,
  5. phoenician,
  6. phoenix islands,
  7. phoenixville,
  8. phokomelia,
  9. pholidota,
  10. pholus

Origin of phoenix

before 900; < Latin < Greek phoînix a mythical bird, purple-red color, Phoenician, date palm; replacing Middle English, Old English fēnix < Medieval Latin; Latin as above

Phoenix

[ fee-niks ]
/ ˈfi nɪks /

noun

Classical Mythology.
  1. the brother of Cadmus and Europa, and eponymous ancestor of the Phoenicians.
  2. a son of Amyntor and Cleobule who became the foster father of Achilles and who fought with the Greek forces in the Trojan War.
a city in and the capital of Arizona, in the central part.
Military. a 13-foot (4 meters), 989-pound (445 kg), U.S. Navy air-to-air missile with radar guidance and a range of over 120 nautical miles.

Arizona

[ ar-uh-zoh-nuh ]
/ ˌær əˈzoʊ nə /

noun

a state in SW United States. 113,909 sq. mi. (295,025 sq. km). Capital: Phoenix. Abbreviation: AZ (for use with zip code), Ariz.
Related formsAr·izo·nan, Ar·i·zo·ni·an [ar-uh-zoh-nee-uh n] /ˌær əˈzoʊ ni ən/, adjective, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for phoenix


British Dictionary definitions for phoenix

phoenix

US phenix

/ (ˈfiːnɪks) /

noun

a legendary Arabian bird said to set fire to itself and rise anew from the ashes every 500 years
a person or thing of surpassing beauty or quality

Word Origin for phoenix

Old English fenix, via Latin from Greek phoinix; identical in form with Greek Phoinix Phoenician, purple

Phoenix

1
/ (ˈfiːnɪks) /

noun Latin genitive Phoenices (ˈfiːnɪˌsiːz)

a constellation in the S hemisphere lying between Grus and Eridanus

Phoenix

2
/ (ˈfiːnɪks) /

noun

a city in central Arizona, capital city of the state, on the Salt River. Pop: 1 388 416 (2003 est)

Arizona

/ (ˌærɪˈzəʊnə) /

noun

a state of the southwestern US: consists of the Colorado plateau in the northeast, including the Grand Canyon, divided from desert in the southwest by mountains rising over 3750 m (12 500 ft). Capital: Phoenix. Pop: 5 580 811 (2003 est). Area: 293 750 sq km (113 417 sq miles)Abbreviation: Ariz., (with zip code) AZ
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

Culture definitions for phoenix

phoenix

[ (fee-niks) ]

A mythical bird that periodically burned itself to death and emerged from the ashes as a new phoenix. According to most stories, the rebirth of the phoenix happened every five hundred years. Only one phoenix lived at a time.

Note

To “rise like a phoenix from the ashes” is to overcome a seemingly insurmountable setback.

Phoenix

[ (fee-niks) ]

Capital city of Arizona.

Arizona

State in the southwestern United States bordered by Utah to the north, New Mexico to the east, Mexico to the south, and California and Nevada to the west. Its capital and largest city is Phoenix.

Note

The Grand Canyon is in northwestern Arizona.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.