1

Olympian

play
adjective Olym·pi·an \ə-ˈlim-pē-ən, ō-\

Definition of Olympian

  1. 1 :  of or relating to Mount Olympus in Thessaly

  2. 2 :  befitting or characteristic of an Olympian; especially :  lofty his … formula of glib simplicity and Olympian arrogance — Richard Pollak

Did You Know?

The Greek gods lived high atop Mt. Olympus, which allowed them to watch what went on in the human realm below and intervene as they saw fit. They insisted on being properly worshipped by humans, but otherwise tended to treat the affairs of these weak and short-lived creatures almost like a sport. So Olympian describes someone who seems "lofty" and "above it all", as if surveying a scene in which other people appear the size of ants. The Olympic Games were first celebrated in the 8th century B.C., at the religious site called Olympia (far from Mt. Olympus), and Olympian today actually most often refers to Olympic athletes.

15th Century

First Known Use of olympian

15th century


2

Olympian

adjective Olym·pi·an

Definition of Olympian

  1. 1 :  of or relating to the ancient Greek region of Olympia

  2. 2 :  of, relating to, or constituting the Olympic Games

1593

First Known Use of olympian

1593


3

Olympian

noun Olym·pi·an

Definition of Olympian

  1. :  a participant in Olympic Games

1606

First Known Use of olympian

1606


4

Olympian

noun Olym·pi·an

Definition of Olympian

  1. 1 :  one of the ancient Greek deities dwelling on Olympus

  2. 2 :  a being of lofty detachment or superior attainments

1819

First Known Use of olympian

1819


Seen and Heard

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

to glide in or as if in an airplane

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

  • istock-refers-to-this-as-a-tumble-of-strawberries-which-sounded-pretty-nice-to-us
  • Which is a synonym of garner?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

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

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!