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

  • adj. Of, relating to, or suggestive of the allegorical writings of John Bunyan.
  • adj. Of, relating to, or suggestive of the legend of Paul Bunyan.
  • adj. Of astonishingly large size: "Bunyanesque waves . . . crunched homes and municipal piers into little more than kindling wood” ( Time).


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • On a cool fall weekend, Atlanta Falcons fullback Ovie Mughelli opened the passenger door and swung his tree trunk-sized leg out of his car, exposing his six-foot-two, 250-pound frame--a Paul Bunyanesque physique that’s bowled over bigger men.

    Rocky Kistner: A Green Football Giant Helps Kids Save the World

  • Jobstian stories are generally Bunyanesque tall tales involving things like sealing tires with spoiled milk and extruding MA2 rims in the forest with your teeth.

    Going Down Hard: Saucy Kangaroos and Spicy Videos

  • Inasmuch as it is a symbol of outsized, Bunyanesque pretension, I admit I have become fascinated with it in the same way I can't seem to stop watching that Glenn Frey video.

    Heat-Addled: Cooler Heads Will Prevail

  • This drew the attention of none other than uber-curmudgeon and serial retrogrouch Jobst Brandt, who predictably used it as an opportunity to tout not only his well-known hatred of hard anodized rims "I haven't seen such a split since black hard anodized rims first appeared on the market in the 1970's" but also to flaunt his super-human Bunyanesque riding ability.

    Sticky Fingers and Sticky Issues: Thefts, Failures, Recalls, and Judgments

  • If Torre wasn't about to plan his every waking moment around Barry Bonds 'Bunyanesque cuts, he couldn't boycott the Angels and Giants, either. - Torre makes adjustments as Series spectator

  • Though the rapidly falling temperature of the air outside only whispered of approaching autumn, Bunyanesque lengths of amputated oak crackled for attention within the Stygian depths of a corner fireplace fashioned of hand-laid river rock.

    Lost And Found

  • The Reds first baseman had Paul Bunyanesque biceps—Mark McGwire is the proverbial ninety-eight-pound weakling in contrast—that he liked to flaunt, to give the pitcher something to think about.

    WHY is the FOUL POLE FAIR?

  • A man of Bunyanesque heft, Mr. Heppner comes across as the most vulnerable of big men, a slightly lost giant.

    Manhattan Music

  • There was a Bunyanesque ring to many of Captain Van [couver] 's names, like Desolation Sound and Deception Pass….

    Now Voyager

  • To get himself going, or to keep himself stable, he summarizes or quotes rather too extensively from the Voyage of Captain George Vancouver, the tedious, sometimes odious, seaman who charted this difficult coast in 1792-1793, meanwhile dispensing some of those Bunyanesque place names.

    Now Voyager


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