[pruh-mee-thee-uh n]
  1. a person who resembles Prometheus in spirit or action.

Origin of Promethean

First recorded in 1580–90; Promethe(us) + -an Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for promethean

Historical Examples of promethean

British Dictionary definitions for promethean


  1. of or relating to Prometheus
  2. creative, original, or life-enhancing
  1. a person who resembles Prometheus
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 promethean



1580s, from Prometheus + -an. Before the introduction of modern matches (see lucifer), promethean was the name given (early 19c.) to small glass tubes full of sulphuric acid, surrounded by an inflammable mixture, which ignited when pressed and gave off light.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper