Definition of paean in English:


Line breaks: paean
Pronunciation: /ˈpiːən


  • 1A song of praise or triumph: a paean of praise for the great poets
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    • Where other singers had songs that (even tangentially) referred to the hardships of life, the Copper family's songs are mostly paeans of praise to a farming life that is hard work, but rewarding.
    • The priests and nuns routinely punctuated their prayers with paeans in praise of the goodness and greatness of Pius XII.
    • Lyric poetry included dithyrambs, encomia, paeans, and hymns.
  • 1.1A creative work expressing enthusiastic praise: he’s created a filmic paean to his hero
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    • These films are a steady countercurrent to the seemingly endless paeans to World War II, a recognition that there have been quite a few wars and generations since the ‘greatest.’
    • But despite these revelations, the novel is a paean to the power of the aesthetic.
    • In its fuller exposition, the poem is a paean to the westward expansion of the country.
    song of praise, hymn, psalm, anthem, shout of praise, alleluia; praise, plaudit, exaltation, glorification, eulogy, tribute, testimonial, extolment, encomium, panegyric, accolade, acclamation, commendation, compliment, bouquet


late 16th century: via Latin from Greek paian 'hymn of thanksgiving to Apollo' (invoked by the name Paian, originally the Homeric name for the physician of the gods).

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Word of the day coloratura
Pronunciation: ˌkɒlərəˈtjʊərə
elaborate ornamentation of a vocal melody