Definition of chimera
- a fancy, a chimera in my brain, troubles me in my prayer
- —John Donne
- His utopia was a chimera.
- A hybrid created through fusion of a sperm and an egg from different species is a chimera.
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Economic stability in that country is a chimera.
a monster in the closet would not have been the first chimera that the boy had seen in his mind's eye
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'chimera.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
In Greek mythology, the Chimera was a fearsome, fire-breathing monster with a lion's head, a goat's body, and a dragon's tail. She terrorized the people of Lycia until their king, Iobates, asked the hero Bellerophon to slay her. Iobates had an ulterior motive; his son-in-law wanted Bellerophon killed and the king was sure the Chimera would do the job. But Bellerophon called in Pegasus, the winged horse, and brought the Chimera down from above. The beast lived on in people's imaginations, and English speakers adopted her name for any similarly grotesque monster, or, later, for anything fanciful.
Chimera : a monster from Greek mythology that breathes fire and has a lion's head, a goat's body, and a snake's tail
: something that exists only in the imagination and is not possible in reality
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