Definition of sibyl in English:

sibyl

Syllabification: sib·yl
Pronunciation: /ˈsibəl
 
/

noun

  • 1A woman in ancient times supposed to utter the oracles and prophecies of a god.
    More example sentences
    • Looking on are the prophets and sibyls, the mysterious seers of man's tragedy.
    • They inquire of ancient apocalyptic books and oracles, of sibyls and divines, who remembered the future and predicted it in the past: an exercise in retroactive foresight.
    • Droitture explains that her first stones are the sibyls and female prophets; as exemplars of prudent wisdom and fore - sight, they demonstrate that God has entrusted his secrets to faithful and devoted women.
  • 1.1 literary A woman able to foretell the future.

Derivatives

sibylline

Pronunciation: /ˈsibəˌlīn, -ˌlēn/
adjective
More example sentences
  • Mrs Atwater, in sibylline style, predicts of Philip: ‘These hands will bring you great fame.’
  • The girl's sibylline countenance unnerved viewers who, as one critic put it, were almost ‘repelled by the directness and force of the painting.’
  • It's confessional and ruminative, yet also clipped, ‘teacherly’ and sibylline.

Origin

from Old French Sibile or medieval Latin Sibilla, via Latin from Greek Sibulla.

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