Share this entry

Share this page

thyrsus

Line breaks: thyr|sus
Pronunciation: /ˈθəːsəs
 
/

Definition of thyrsus in English:

noun (plural thyrsi /-sʌɪ, -siː/)

(In ancient Greece and Rome) a staff or spear tipped with an ornament like a pine cone, carried by Bacchus and his followers.
Example sentences
  • Frenzied with wine they rushed through woods and over mountains uttering sharp cries, waving pine-cone-tipped wands (thyrsi).
  • The fabulous history of Bacchus relates that he converted the thyrsi carried by himself and his followers into dangerous weapons, by concealing an iron point in the head of leaves.
  • Primrose is a very leafy shrub, producing small, yellowish thyrsi.

Origin

Latin, from Greek thursos 'plant stalk, Bacchic staff'.

Definition of thyrsus in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day orthoepy
Pronunciation: ôrˈTHōəpē
noun
the correct or accepted pronunciation of words