Definitions

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

  • noun A phantom; an apparition.
  • noun An image of an ideal.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A likeness; an image; a representation.
  • noun A shade or specter; an apparition; hence, a confusing reflection or reflected image.
  • noun One of the small floating winged figures frequently found in Greek art, especially on Greek vases.

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

  • noun An image or representation; a form; a phantom; an apparition.

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

  • noun An image or representation of an idea; a representation of an ideal form; an apparition of some actual or imaginary entity, or of some aspect of reality.
  • noun A phantom, a ghost or elusive entity.

Etymologies

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

[Greek eidōlon, from eidos, form; see weid- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Ancient Greek εἴδωλον (eidōlon, "figure, representation"), from εἶδος (eidos, "sight"), from εἴδω (eidō, "I see").

Examples

  • Man is essentially an idolater, -- that is, in bondage to his imagination, -- for there is no more harm in the Greek word eidolon than in the Latin word imago.

    Pages from an Old Volume of Life; a collection of essays, 1857-1881

  • Man is essentially an idolater, -- that is, in bondage to his imagination, -- for there is no more harm in the Greek word eidolon than in the Latin word imago.

    Complete Project Gutenberg Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. Works

  • But he was too much what he calls his eidolon in one book, "Monsieur le psychologue," and the Psyche he deals with is too often a skinny and spectacled creature -- not the love of Cupid and the mother of Voluptas. [

    A History of the French Novel, Vol. 2 To the Close of the 19th Century

  • You get to totally determine the form of your eidolon, which is neat.

    New Paizo Class Playtests Continue « Geek Related

  • Oh, and before I forget, this week’s Word of the Week is eidolon, which is an image, a phantom or apparition, a confusing reflection.

    May 2008

  • Oh, and before I forget, this week’s Word of the Week is eidolon, which is an image, a phantom or apparition, a confusing reflection.

    What’s My Name Again?

  • Mr. Le Page Renouf (32) likens it to the "eidolon" of the Greeks, the "genius" of the Romans; and Dr. Wiedemann has lately written an interesting paper to show that it was not the person, but what he calls "the personality" or "individuality" of the deceased – meaning thereby that which distinguished him in life from other men; in other words, the mental impression which was evoked when his name was mentioned.

    Pharaohs, Fellahs and Explorers

  • Opinions may differ as to the nature of the Ka itself – one regarding it as a ghost, another as a double, another as an "eidolon" or genius; but no Egyptologist doubts that all forms of portraiture in ancient Egypt were funerary, or that they were expressly designed for the accommodation of the Ka.

    Pharaohs, Fellahs and Explorers

  • It was a happy choice; my good genius, I suppose, for you see I was already fairly well read in modern science, and these old Greek philosophies set me thinking backwards, unwinding and unlearning, and getting at that eidolon which is not to be found in the mechanical heavens of this age.

    Field and Hedgerow Being the Last Essays of Richard Jefferies

  • Log in to Reply eidolon (UID#1071) on September 6th, 2009 at 10: 23 pm

    cropping – a fat girls best friend | My[confined]Space

Comments

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  • A phantom.

    May 21, 2008

  • For a citation, see Thule.

    September 2, 2008

  • An acquaintance of mine wrote a screenplay with this title. I always thought it was a great title...

    September 27, 2008

  • beautiful word!

    November 28, 2008

  • 1. a phantom; apparition.

    2. an ideal.

    February 17, 2009

  • Railroad telegraphers used eidolon as shorthand for the phrase "On account of _____, until further advised, we cannot accept _____ for points on the". --US Railway Association, Standard Cipher Code, 1906.

    January 22, 2013

  • "His former colleagues were now living eidolons of youth, beauty, health, joy, desire flitting past him in the studio, lovely and remote as figures from a medieval allegory."

    - "The Far Shore" by Elizabeth Hand, p 130 of Errantry: Strange Stories

    April 28, 2013

  • Sing to the tune of Eidelweiss.

    May 23, 2018