from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Bible Occurring or belonging to the era before the Flood.
  • adjective Extremely old or old-fashioned. synonym: old.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Existing before the flood (the Noachian deluge) recorded in Genesis; relating to the times or events before the Noachian deluge: as, the antediluvian patriarchs: by extension, applied to the time preceding any great flood or inundation, as that which is said to have occurred in China in the time of Yao, 2298 b. c.
  • Belonging to very ancient times; antiquated; primitive; rude; simple: as, antediluvian ideas.
  • noun One who lived before the deluge.
  • noun Hence, humorously
  • noun One who is very old or very antiquated in manners or notions; an old fogy.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Of or relating to the period before the Deluge in Noah's time; hence, antiquated.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective ancient or antiquated; old; prehistoric.
  • adjective Supremely dated.
  • adjective Pertaining or belonging to the time period prior to a great or destructive flood or deluge
  • adjective biblical Pertaining or belonging to the time prior to Noah's Flood.
  • noun One who lived prior to Noah's Flood.

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

  • noun a very old person
  • adjective so extremely old as seeming to belong to an earlier period
  • noun any of the early patriarchs who lived prior to the Noachian deluge
  • adjective of or relating to the period before the biblical flood


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

[From ante– + Latin dīluvium, flood; see diluvial.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin ante- (“before”) +‎ diluvium ("flood"), in reference to the story of Noah’s Ark (Genesis 6–9), an early episode in the Bible.


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  • The doctor armed himself, and held himself in readiness to fire upon an animal which, by its dimensions, recalled the antediluvian quadrupeds.

    The English at the North Pole Part I of the Adventures of Captain Hatteras Jules Verne 1866

  • Parker also complains that British (military) ambulances are "antediluvian" and "reveals" that the laboratory at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan, which is used to match blood and test samples, had to close between 11.30am and 3.30pm because the air-conditioning system could not keep the temperature below 97F (36C).

    Archive 2007-06-01 Richard 2007

  • Sally Keeble, MP for Northampton North, thought the ban epitomised  'the complete nonsense of an institution that won't move on', and Barbara Follett, MP for Stevenage, talked of 'antediluvian' attitudes.

    Betty Bothroyd The Autobiography Bothroyd, Betty 1988

  • "Antiquites Celtiques," published in 1847, M. Boucher de Perthes styled these older tools "antediluvian," because they came from the lowest beds of a series of ancient alluvial strata bordering the valley of the Somme, which geologists had termed "diluvium."

    The Antiquity of Man Charles Lyell 1836

  • That way, they would have found out what kind of antediluvian throwback they hve admitted to the EU. 2009

  • That way, they would have found out what kind of antediluvian throwback they hve admitted to the EU. 2009

  • He complains that merchants in Pasadena are "antediluvian" when it comes to the Internet.

    Journerdism | Will Sullivan's Stompin' ground for journalists and nerds. 2008

  • When Dewi Morris uses the word "antediluvian" you know you've got a problem

    Blogposts | 2008

  • "antediluvian" shape of the bat -- no paddings on the legs.

    Pickwickian Manners and Customs Percy Hethrington Fitzgerald 1879

  • "antediluvian," and for startling originality in his views as well as fearlessness in expressing them.

    Camps, Quarters, and Casual Places Archibald Forbes 1869


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  • Now used to mean "prehistoric", this word etymologically refers to "before the flood" (the one described in the book of Genesis). I don't mind; it sounds beautiful.

    December 3, 2006

  • I hope I'm not the only one who thought this was only a term from Vampire: the Masquerade...

    ... I only played the Troika computer game! Don't look at me like that!

    December 3, 2006

  • Well Tank, that's the first place I heard it, but I've since heard it used otherwise.

    December 3, 2006

  • goes very well with 'prelapsarian'

    January 23, 2007

  • Ah, I thought it was just archaic in general. I love the synonyms for this one.

    Roget's II

    ADJECTIVE: 1. Of, existing, or occurring in a distant period: ancient, early, primitive. See START. 2. Belonging to, existing, or occurring in times long past: age-old, ancient, antiquated, antique, archaic, hoary, old, olden, old-time, timeworn, venerable. Idioms: old as Methuselah, old as the hills. See NEW.

    May 18, 2007

  • This is my fave word of all time !

    August 14, 2008

  • Logos, you might want to check the spelling on your profile, then.

    August 14, 2008

  • Thank you. I have a visual problem from time to time.

    August 14, 2008