Polaris

[ poh-lair-is, -lar-, puh- ]
/ poʊˈlɛər ɪs, -ˈlær-, pə- /

noun

Astronomy. the polestar or North Star, a star of the second magnitude situated close to the north pole of the heavens, in the constellation Ursa Minor: the outermost star in the handle of the Little Dipper.
a two-stage U.S. ballistic missile, usually fired from a submerged submarine.

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Origin of Polaris

1955–60; short for Medieval Latin stella polāris polar star
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for Polaris

British Dictionary definitions for Polaris

Polaris
/ (pəˈlɑːrɪs) /

noun

Also called: the Pole Star, the North Star the brightest star in the constellation Ursa Minor, situated slightly less than 1° from the north celestial pole. It is a Cepheid variable, with a period of four days. Visual magnitude: 2.08–2.17; spectral type: F8Ib
  1. a type of US two-stage intermediate-range ballistic missile, usually fired by a submerged submarine
  2. (as modifier)a Polaris submarine

Word Origin for Polaris

shortened from Medieval Latin stella polāris polar star
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 Polaris

Polaris
[ pə-lărĭs ]

A bright star at the end of the handle of the Little Dipper in the constellation Ursa Minor. Polaris is 1° from the north celestial pole, and it remains in the same location in the sky all year, making it a useful navigation tool. Polaris is actually a double star with a faint companion star and has an apparent magnitude of 2.04. Also called North Star. Scientific name: Alpha Ursae Minoris.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.