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

  • n. Astronomy A point on the celestial sphere directly below the observer, diametrically opposite the zenith.
  • n. The lowest point: the nadir of their fortunes.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The point of the celestial sphere, directly opposite the zenith; inferior pole of the horizon; point of the celestial sphere directly under the place where we stand.
  • n. The lowest point; time of greatest depression.
  • n. The axis of a projected conical shadow; the direction of the force of gravity at a location; down.
  • n. An empty box added beneath a full one in a beehive to give the colony more room to expand or store honey.
  • v. To extend (a beehive) by adding an empty box at the base.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. That point of the heavens, or lower hemisphere, directly opposite the zenith; the inferior pole of the horizon; the point of the celestial sphere directly under the place where we stand.
  • n. The lowest point; the time of greatest depression.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. That point of the heavens which is vertically below any station upon the earth.
  • n. Hence The lowest point; the point of extreme depression.

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

  • n. the point below the observer that is directly opposite the zenith on the imaginary sphere against which celestial bodies appear to be projected
  • n. an extreme state of adversity; the lowest point of anything


Middle English, from Medieval Latin, from Arabic naẓīr (as-samt), opposite (the zenith), from naẓara, to see, watch; see nṭr in Semitic roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Medieval Latin nadir, from Arabic نَظِيرُ السَّمْت (naẓīru as-samt), composed of السَمْتُ (as-samt, "the zenith") and نَظِير (naẓīr, "counterpart, corresponding to"). (Wiktionary)



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  • Exactly my thoughts on the matter. I am fairly sure this person is from another country (or at least grew up speaking a language other than English), so I do wonder what the name might mean in that country or language.

    August 4, 2009

  • That marks a low point in supermarket employee names.

    August 3, 2009

  • There's an employee at one of my local supermarkets whose name is Nadir. Seriously.

    August 3, 2009

  • Zenith Apogee would make a great name for a comic book character.

    *wondering if some celebrity has already used it for a new baby name*

    August 2, 2008

  • I like the name Ralph Affliction.

    August 2, 2008

  • But Ralph Zenith has a certain ring to it.

    August 2, 2008

  • It certainly does.

    August 1, 2008

  • Then again, that sounds better than Ralph Apex.

    August 1, 2008

  • Except for that unfortunate association with Ralph...

    August 1, 2008

  • this word sounds too beautiful to be the lowest is a much more gorgeous word than apex

    August 1, 2008

  • If I was to make a list of words learnt from "Bloom County," this would be on top of it.

    October 12, 2007