Definitions

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

  • noun A member of an order of priests in ancient Gaul and Britain who appear in Welsh and Irish legend as prophets and sorcerers.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun One of an order of priests or ministers of religion among the ancient Celts of Gaul, Britain, and Ireland.
  • noun A member of a society called the United Ancient Order of Druids, founded in London in 1781, for the mutual benefit of the members, and now counting numerous lodges, called groves, in America, Australia, Germany, etc.
  • noun In entomology, a kind of saw-fly, a hyme-nopterous insect of the family Tenthredinidœ.

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

  • noun One of an order of priests which in ancient times existed among certain branches of the Celtic race, especially among the Gauls and Britons.
  • noun A member of a social and benevolent order, founded in London in 1781, and professedly based on the traditions of the ancient Druids. Lodges or groves of the society are established in other countries.
  • noun a name given, in the south of England, to weatherworn, rough pillars of gray sandstone scattered over the chalk downs, but in other countries generally in the form of circles, or in detached pillars.

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

  • noun One of an order of priests among certain groups of Celts before the adoption of Christianity.

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

  • noun a pre-Christian priest among the Celts of ancient Gaul and Britain and Ireland

Etymologies

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

[From Latin druidēs, druids, of Celtic origin; see deru- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

The earliest record of the term is reported in Greek as Δρυΐδαι (druidai) (plural), cited in Diogenes Laertius in the 3rd century CE. The native Celtic word for "druid" is first attested in Latin texts as druides (plural) and other texts also employ the form druidae (akin to the Greek form). It is understood that the Latin form is a borrowing from Gaulish. the word is cognate with the later insular Celtic words, Old Irish druí ("druid, sorcerer") and early Welsh dryw ("seer"). The proto-Celtic word may be *dru-wid-s (literally, "oak-knower"), from Proto-Indo-European *dóru (“tree”) and *weyd- (“to see”).

Examples

  • I proved myself a magician, what they call a druid, by various sleight-of-hand tricks and occultistic nonsense.

    The Boat of a Million Years

  • I proved myself a magician, what they call a druid, by various sleight-of-hand tricks and occultistic nonsense.

    The Boat of a Million Years

  • This somewhat-crazed druid is definitely pirate material.

    Meet the Reavers – “Serpent” Ref Jorenson, Ulfen Druid « Geek Related

  • Celebrate Yule instead or dance around in druid robes for the solstice.

    Merry Christmas, Garrison! « View From a Height

  • With the ancient writers the word druid had two meanings; in the stricter sense it meant the teachers of moral philosophy and science; in the wider sense it included the priests, diviners, judges, teachers, physicians, astronomers, and philosophers of Gaul.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 5: Diocese-Fathers of Mercy

  • The druid was a small man, his back stooped and crooked with age, his face like a living skull, yellowed flesh clinging to his bones above a stringy gray beard.

    Dark Moon of Avalon

  • The druid was a small man, his back stooped and crooked with age, his face like a living skull, yellowed flesh clinging to his bones above a stringy gray beard.

    Dark Moon of Avalon

  • The druid was a small man, his back stooped and crooked with age, his face like a living skull, yellowed flesh clinging to his bones above a stringy gray beard.

    Dark Moon of Avalon

  • The celebration at the doctor's house left the heroes well-fed and drunk, and though it occurred to both Fabi and Paythan that the druid might be able to tell them more about these strange portals, they are reluctant to ask him about it.

    Zero Punctuation

  • When the King heard the words of the lady, he commanded his people to call the druid again to him, saying, "Bring my druid Coran to me; for I see that the fairy lady has this day regained the power of her voice."

    Childhood's Favorites and Fairy Stories The Young Folks Treasury, Volume 1

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