Definitions

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

  • n.pl. Greek Mythology The nymphs who together with a dragon watch over a garden in which golden apples grow.
  • n.pl. Greek Mythology A garden, situated at the western end of the earth, in which golden apples grow.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n.pl. The daughters of Hesperus, or Night (brother of Atlas), and fabled possessors of a garden producing golden apples, in Africa, at the western extremity of the known world. To slay the guarding dragon and get some of these apples was one of the labors of Hercules. Called also Atlantides.
  • n.pl. The garden producing the golden apples.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • In Greek myth, nymphs who guarded, with the aid of a fierce serpent, the golden apples given by Ge (Earth) to Hera (Juno), in delightful gardens at the western extremity of the world, supposed to be in the region of Mount Atlas in Africa. Their origin and number (from three to seven) are variously given.
  • In botany, a class of plants founded by Endlicher, including the orders Humiriaceæ, Olacineæ, Aurantiaceæ, Meliaceæ, and Cedrelaceæ. Same as the Hesperideæ of Sachs.

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

  • n. (Greek mythology) group of 3 to 7 nymphs who guarded the golden apples that Gaea gave as a wedding gift to Hera

Etymologies

Greek, from pl. of hesperis, feminine of hesperios, of the evening, western; see Hesperian.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

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