noun, plural sphinx·es, sphin·ges [sfin-jeez] /ˈsfɪn dʒiz/.
- a figure of an imaginary creature having the head of a man or an animal and the body of a lion.
- (usually initial capital letter) the colossal recumbent stone figure of this kind near the pyramids of Giza.
Origin of sphinx
Examples from the Web for sphinges
These will consist chiefly of Noctu, but Sphinges, Geometr and numerous small species also join the company.
Sphinges are beginning to fall off, and so are the Bombyces, but the Noctu and Geometr are slightly on the increase.
British Dictionary definitions for sphinges (1 of 2)
noun plural sphinxes or sphinges (ˈsfɪndʒiːz)
British Dictionary definitions for sphinges (2 of 2)
noun the Sphinx
Word Origin for Sphinx
Culture definitions for sphinges (1 of 2)
In the story of Oedipus, a winged monster with the head of a woman and the body of a lion. It waylaid travelers on the roads near the city of Thebes and would kill any of them who could not answer this riddle: “What creatures walk on four legs in the morning, on two legs at noon, and on three legs in the evening?” Oedipus finally gave the correct answer: human beings, who go on all fours as infants, walk upright in maturity, and in old age rely on the “third leg” of a cane.
Culture definitions for sphinges (2 of 2)
A great sculpture carved from the rock near the Egyptian pyramids in about 2500 b.c. It depicts a creature from Egyptian mythology with the head of a man and the body of a lion. (See under “Mythology and Folklore.”)