Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

atlas

play
noun at·las \ˈat-ləs\

Simple Definition of atlas

  • : a book of maps

Full Definition of atlas

  1. 1 capitalized :  a Titan who for his part in the Titans' revolt against the gods is forced by Zeus to support the heavens on his shoulders

  2. 2 capitalized :  one who bears a heavy burden

  3. 3 a :  a bound collection of maps often including illustrations, informative tables, or textual matter b :  a bound collection of tables, charts, or plates

  4. 4 :  the first vertebra of the neck

  5. 5 plural usually at·lan·tes play \ət-ˈlan-(ˌ)tēz, at-\ :  a male figure used like a caryatid as a supporting column or pilaster —called also telamon

Examples of atlas

  1. a road atlas of the U.S.



Illustration of atlas

Origin of atlas

Latin Atlant-, Atlas, from Greek


First Known Use: 1513

Rhymes with atlas


Medical Dictionary

atlas

play
noun at·las \ˈat-ləs\

Medical Definition of atlas

  1. :  the first vertebra of the neck



Biographical Note for atlas

Atlas, Greek mythological character. In Greek legend Atlas was a Titan who took part in the revolt against the gods. As a punishment he was condemned to hold the heavens aloft forever. Atlas was usually represented as a human figure bearing the heavens or the celestial globe upon his shoulders.


Learn More about atlas


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up atlas? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 5, 2016

bread traditionally eaten on Shabbat

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image1037863653

Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?

spindrift pince-nez duvet kittly-benders
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ