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

  • adjective Marked by aphorisms; aphoristic.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • A contracted form of gnomonic.
  • Containing or dealing in maxims; sententious.
  • In grammar, used in maxims or general statements; applied to express a universal truth: as, a gnomic aorist.

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

  • adjective Sententious; uttering or containing maxims, or striking detached thoughts; aphoristic.
  • adjective Greek poets, as Theognis and Solon, of the sixth century B. C., whose writings consist of short sententious precepts and reflections.

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

  • adjective Of, or relating to gnomes.
  • adjective of a saying or aphorism Mysterious and often incomprehensible yet seemingly wise.

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

  • adjective relating to or containing gnomes


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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  • Not the little old guys with pointy hats:

    gnomic = characterized by the expression of popular wisdom in the condensed form of proverbs or aphorisms, also known as gnomes. The term was first used of the ‘Gnomic Poets’ of 6th�?century Greece, although there are older traditions of gnomic writing in Chinese, Egyptian, and other cultures; the Hebrew book of Proverbs is a well�?known collection. The term is often extended to later writings in which moral truths are presented in maxims or aphorisms.

    June 21, 2008

  • Somebody sent me this yesterday:

    Thoughts of a Jewish Buddhist

    Let your mind be as a floating cloud. Let your stillness be as the wooded glen. And sit up straight. You'll never meet the Buddha with posture like that.

    There is no escaping karma. In a previous life, you never called, you never wrote, you never visited. And whose fault was that?

    Wherever you go, there you are. Your luggage is another story.

    To practice Zen and the art of Jewish motorcycle maintenance, do the following: get rid of the motorcycle. What were you thinking?

    Be aware of your body. Be aware of your perceptions. Keep in mind that not every physical sensation is a symptom of a terminal illness.

    If there is no self, whose arthritis is this?

    Breathe in. Breathe out. Breathe in. Breathe out. Forget this and attaining Enlightenment will be the least of your problems.

    The Tao has no expectations. The Tao demands nothing of others. The Tao does not speak. The Tao does not blame. The Tao does not take sides. The Tao is not Jewish.

    Drink tea and nourish life. With the first sip, joy. With the second, satisfaction. With the third, Danish.

    The Buddha taught that one should practice loving kindness to all sentient beings. Still, would it kill you to find a nice sentient being who happens to be Jewish?

    Be patient and achieve all things. Be impatient and achieve all things faster.

    To Find the Buddha, look within. Deep inside you are ten thousand flowers. Each flower blossoms ten thousand times. Each blossom has ten thousand petals. You might want to see a specialist.

    Be here now. Be someplace else later. Is that so complicated?

    Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkes.

    Zen Judaism: For You, A Little Enlightenment

    by David M. Bader

    June 21, 2008