[ sahy-am-uh-kee ]
/ saɪˈæm ə ki /

noun, plural sci·am·a·chies.

an act or instance of fighting a shadow or an imaginary enemy.
Also sciomachy.

Origin of sciamachy

1615–25; < Greek skiamachía, equivalent to skiá shadow + -machia -machy Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for sciamachy


sciomachy or skiamachy (skaɪˈæməkɪ)

/ (saɪˈæməkɪ) /

noun plural -chies

rare a fight with an imaginary enemy

Word Origin for sciamachy

C17: from Greek skiamakhia a mock fight, from skia a shadow + makhesthai to fight
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 sciamachy



"fighting with shadows, shadow-boxing" 1620s, from Greek skiamakhia "shadow-fighting, a sham fight" but perhaps literally "fighting in the shade" (i.e., in school; ancient teachers taught in shaded public places such as porches and groves), from skia "shade, shadow" (see shine (v.)) + makhe "battle" (see -machy).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper