Definition of antediluvian
1 : of or relating to the period before the flood described in the Bible
2a : made, evolved, or developed a long time ago an antediluvian automobile that antediluvian relic known as a slide ruleb : extremely primitive or outmoded an antediluvian prejudice antediluvian in his politics
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Examples of antediluvian in a Sentence
He has antediluvian notions about the role of women in the workplace.
found evidence in the Middle East of an antediluvian people previously unknown to history
Recent Examples of antediluvian from the Web
Some of the earliest restorations of dinosaurs and marine reptiles by the 19th century artist John Martin were apocalyptic spectacles of antediluvian combat where scavengers waited to pick at the remains of the losing contestant.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'antediluvian'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Before there was "antediluvian," there were the Latin words ante (meaning "before") and "diluvium" (meaning "flood"). As long ago as 1646, English speakers were using "antediluvian" to describe conditions they believed existed before the great flood described in the biblical account of Noah and the ark. By the early 1700s, the word had come to be used as both an adjective and a noun referring to anything or anyone prodigiously old. Charles Darwin used it to characterize the mighty "antediluvian trees" some prehistoric mammals might have used as a food source, and in his American Notes, Charles Dickens described an elderly lady who informed him, "It is an extremely proud and pleasant thing . . . to be an antediluvian."
ANTEDILUVIAN Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of antediluvian for English Language Learners
: very old or old-fashioned
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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for antediluvian
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