Origin of halcyon
Middle English alceon, from Latin halcyon, from Greek alkyōn, halkyōn
First Known Use: 14th century
Simple Definition of halcyon
: very happy and successful
Examples of halcyon in a sentence
<a halcyon era following the American Civil War>
<during those early halcyon years the company's potential for growth seemed unlimited>
Did You Know?
According to Greek mythology, Alkyone, the daughter of the god of the winds, became so distraught when she learned that her husband had been killed in a shipwreck that she threw herself into the sea and was changed into a kingfisher. As a result, ancient Greeks called such birds alkyon or halkyon. The legend also says that such birds built floating nests on the sea, where they so charmed the wind god that he created a period of unusual calm that lasted until the birds' eggs hatched. This legend prompted people to use halcyon both as a noun naming a genus of kingfisher and as an adjective meaning either "of or relating to the kingfisher or its nesting period" or calm.
First Known Use of halcyon
Learn More about halcyon
Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for "halcyon"
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up halcyon? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).