Definitions

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

  • noun A staff tipped with a pine cone and twined with ivy, carried by Dionysus, Dionysian revelers, and satyrs.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun One of the most common attributes or emblems of Dionysus (Bacchus) and his thiasus and vo taries.
  • noun Same as thyrse, 2.

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

  • noun A staff entwined with ivy, and surmounted by a pine cone, or by a bunch of vine or ivy leaves with grapes or berries. It is an attribute of Bacchus, and of the satyrs and others engaging in Bacchic rites.
  • noun (Bot.) A species of inflorescence; a dense panicle, as in the lilac and horse-chestnut.

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

  • noun A staff topped with a conical ornament, carried by Bacchus or his followers.
  • noun botany A species of inflorescence; a dense panicle, as in the lilac and horse-chestnut.

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

  • noun a dense flower cluster (as of the lilac or horse chestnut) in which the main axis is racemose and the branches are cymose

Etymologies

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

[Latin, from Greek thursos.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin thyrsus, from Ancient Greek θύρσος (thursos).

Examples

  • The thyrsus was a long staff, carried by Bacchus, and by the Satyrs and Bacchanalians engaged in the worship of the God of the grape.

    The Metamorphoses of Ovid Vol. I, Books I-VII

  • As she worshipped the god she typically held a thyrsus, a giant fennel staff topped with a pinecone.

    The Spartacus War

  • The Dionysian thyrsus, like the later withche's wand, was willow.

    Helen of Troy

  • As she worshipped the god she typically held a thyrsus, a giant fennel staff topped with a pinecone.

    The Spartacus War

  • He is often to be found on this blog, either riding the Behemouth with a cowboy whoop or following behind it on foot, having set it off on a rampage with a swipe of his sacred thyrsus across its arse.

    An A-Z Of This Blog

  • As she worshipped the god she typically held a thyrsus, a giant fennel staff topped with a pinecone.

    The Spartacus War

  • Satyrs often carry the thyrsus: the rod of Dionysus tipped with a pine cone.

    Pan and Satyrs

  • As she worshipped the god she typically held a thyrsus, a giant fennel staff topped with a pinecone.

    The Spartacus War

  • He is often to be found on this blog, either riding the Behemouth with a cowboy whoop or following behind it on foot, having set it off on a rampage with a swipe of his sacred thyrsus across its arse.

    Archive 2007-12-01

  • Theban blood; with no wild waving of the thyrsus, clad in fawnskin thou dancest, but with chariots and bitted steeds wheelest thy charger strong of hoof.

    The Phoenissae

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