Definitions

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

  • n.pl. Greek Mythology The seven daughters of Atlas (Maia, Electra, Celaeno, Taygeta, Merope, Alcyone, and Sterope), who were metamorphosed into stars.
  • n.pl. An open star cluster in the constellation Taurus, consisting of several hundred stars, of which six are visible to the naked eye.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • proper n. The "seven sisters", companions of Artemis and daughters of the Titan Atlas and the sea-nymph Pleione.
  • proper n. An open cluster of hot blue stars in the constellation Taurus, and the most easily visible such cluster from Earth.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n.pl. The seven daughters of Atlas and the nymph Pleione, fabled to have been made by Jupiter a constellation in the sky.
  • n.pl. A group of small stars in the neck of the constellation Taurus; -- called also the seven sisters.

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

  • n. a star cluster in the constellation Taurus
  • n. (Greek mythology) 7 daughters of Atlas and half-sisters of the Hyades; placed among the stars to save them from the pursuit of Orion

Etymologies

Middle English Pliades, from Latin Plēïades, from Greek Plēiades.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin Pleiades, from Ancient Greek Πλειάδες. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Here they would sit like bumps on a log until midnight, and then, when the constellation which we call the Pleiades came exactly overhead, the danger was over.

    St. Nicholas Magazine for Boys and Girls, Vol. 5, Nov 1877-Nov 1878 Scribner's Illustrated

  • Schall gave him the word "Pleiades" and asked for a poem.

    KansasCity.com: Front Page

  • If I find out that someone used to call themself Christian but dropped their faith because they originally believed that God was a purely anthropomorphic individual residing in the Pleiades star system and have since come to believe that the Pleiades is uninhabited, I'm not committing a fallacy by questioning whether they truly had a handle on Christianity.

    Blind Faith?

  • A reporter named Tor Pleiades is traveling aboard a dirigible headed for a port near a major political conference (involving an otherwise irrelevant alien artifact that may of may not represent first contact).

    REVIEW: Jim Baen's Universe #11

  • Alcyone, the brightest star of the Pleiades, is many times bigger than our sun.

    Photographing the Sky

  • Still Doll was thankful for the safe subject, as he went on to mark out what he promised that she should see in the winter -- the swarm of glow-worms, as he called the Pleiades; and 'Our Lady's Rock, 'namely, distaff, the northern name for Orion; and then he talked of the stars that so perplexed him, namely, the planets, that never stayed in their places.

    The Herd Boy and His Hermit

  • "the cluster" or "company," -- the group we know as the Pleiades, -- is mentioned in Scripture; and in each case it is associated with _Kĕsīl_,

    The Astronomy of the Bible An Elementary Commentary on the Astronomical References of Holy Scripture

  • The Winkler Prins encyclopedia of astronomy writes, “The Pleiades is a star cluster … and consists of over 3,000 stars, which are situated in the middle of reflection nebulae.”

    Modern Science in the Bible

  • It is rather striking that when referring to the Pleiades, the Bible uses the verb “to bind,” as if the stars were linked together with threads—something that cannot be observed with the naked eye—and that in the next sentence it maintains precisely the opposite about the Orion.

    Modern Science in the Bible

  • She gazed along the eastern horizon, resting her eyes upon the thin net of stars that the Greeks called the Pleiades, the sailing ones.

    Lilith’s Dream: A Tale of the Vampire Life

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.