Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • A legendary city or historical region of the New World, often thought to be in South America, that was fabled for its great wealth of gold and precious jewels and eagerly sought by 16th- and 17th-century explorers, including Sir Walter Raleigh.
  • n. A place of fabulous wealth or inordinately great opportunity.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • proper n. A Muisca tribal chief who covered himself in gold dust
  • proper n. A legendary lost city of gold
  • proper n. Thus, any place of fabulous wealth

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • A name given by the Spaniards in the 16th century to an imaginary country in the interior of South America, reputed to abound in gold and precious stones.
  • Any region of fabulous wealth; exceeding richness.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A country rich beyond all precedent in gold and jewels, which the early Spanish explorers believed to exist somewhere in the new world, and which Orellana averred that he had found in his voyage down the Amazon in 1540-41.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an imaginary place of great wealth and opportunity; sought in South America by 16th-century explorers
  • n. an imaginary place of great wealth and opportunity; sought in South America by 16th-century explorers

Etymologies

After El Dorado 1.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Spanish The golden one (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Pacific Rim owns a mine called El Dorado, which is near the community of San Isidro, where Marcelo Rivera lived and was organizing.

    Democracy Now!

  • It was truly one of the greatest adventures of the age, and historic, for here we get the word El Dorado, used for the first time in the history of discovery -- the legendary land of gold which was never found, but which attracted all the Elizabethan sailors to this romantic country.

    A Book of Discovery The History of the World's Exploration, From the Earliest Times to the Finding of the South Pole

  • The name El Dorado, "The Golden," was given to this fabled country; and for a score or more of years after Orellana had told his story, efforts were made to find it.

    Discoverers and Explorers

  • The cacique would be covered from head to toe in powdered gold, thus the name El Dorado, or "the Golden one".

    Medlogs - Recent stories

  • El Dorado police say someone called El Dorado High School about 8am, Monday and made a bomb threat.

    KWCH - KWCH.com RSS

  • And then today in El Dorado, which is 40 miles from here, where the ranch is actually located the adult, the men and women, the judge said if you men and women want your children back, you are going to have to come in to law enforcement in the city of El Dorado and be tested there.

    CNN Transcript Apr 22, 2008

  • He recently bought 1,700 acres in west Texas in the middle of nowhere, outside a small town called El Dorado, and he's been systematically building a city there.

    CNN Transcript May 8, 2006

  • And I have been assured by such of the Spaniards as have seen Manoa, the imperial city of Guiana, which the Spaniards call El Dorado, that for the greatness, for the riches, and for the excellent seat, it far exceedeth any of the world, at least of so much of the world as is known to the Spanish nation.

    The Discovery of Guiana. Paras. 1-49

  • Mother Lode, and some spend half their lives in search of it; it was called El Dorado three hundred years ago.

    Vane of the Timberlands

  • The El Dorado was a five-masted schooner, twelve years old, and left

    Mystic Isles of the South Seas.

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