lamia

noun
la·​mia | \ ˈlā-mē-ə How to pronounce lamia (audio) \

Definition of lamia

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a female demon : vampire

Lamia

geographical name
La·​mia | \ lä-ˈmē-ä How to pronounce Lamia (audio) \

Definition of Lamia (Entry 2 of 2)

city in east central Greece northwest of Thermopylae population 43,898

Did You Know?

According to Greek mythology, Lamia was a queen of Libya who was beloved by Zeus. When Hera, Zeus's wife, robbed Lamia of her children from this union, Lamia killed every child she could get into her power. Stories were also told of a fiend named Lamia who, in the form of a beautiful woman, seduced young men in order to devour them and who also sucked the blood of children. Such nightmarish legends compelled poet John Keats, and many other writers before and after him, to write their own tales of Lamia, which still haunt and terrify those souls who dare read them.

First Known Use of lamia

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for lamia

Noun

Middle English, from Latin, from Greek, devouring monster; akin to Greek lamyros gluttonous

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about lamia

Listen to Our Podcast about lamia

Dictionary Entries near lamia

La Mesa

Lamet

lameter

lamia

Lamia

Lamiaceae

lamiaceous

Statistics for lamia

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for lamia

The first known use of lamia was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

More from Merriam-Webster on lamia

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lamia

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about lamia

Comments on lamia

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

WORD OF THE DAY

miscellaneous remnants or debris

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

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!