lingam

noun

lin·​gam ˈliŋ-gəm How to pronounce lingam (audio)
variants or linga
: a stylized phallic symbol that is worshipped in Hinduism as a sign of generative power and that represents the god Shiva compare yoni

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Axel Vervoordt owns an Indian lingam from the 19th century. WSJ, 6 Apr. 2018 In every nook and cranny are numerous shrines and lingams. Antonia Neubauer, Town & Country, 5 Oct. 2016 The oval object in front is a Japanese lingam from the 19th century. Thomas Gebremedhin, WSJ, 27 Mar. 2018 Magazine incorrectly said that the lingam was Japanese in origin. WSJ, 6 Apr. 2018 The tradition is that a pregnant woman walks into the river and discovers the lingam with her feet. Thomas Gebremedhin, WSJ, 27 Mar. 2018 A city of lingams dedicated to the Lord God Shiva, Varanasi is known as an auspicious place to die and a super-highway to heaven. Antonia Neubauer, Town & Country, 5 Oct. 2016 The builders of Vat Phou had noticed this and proclaimed it a natural lingam of Shiva. Edward Wong, New York Times, 4 Apr. 2017 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lingam.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

Etymology

Sanskrit liṅga (nominative liṅgam), literally, characteristic

First Known Use

1719, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of lingam was in 1719

Dictionary Entries Near lingam

Cite this Entry

“Lingam.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lingam. Accessed 6 Feb. 2023.

More from Merriam-Webster on lingam

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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


Commonly Confused Words Quiz

  • vector image of a face with thought expression
  • I went to the ______ store to buy a birthday card.
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Solve today's spelling word game by finding as many words as you can with using just 7 letters. Longer words score more points.

Can you make 12 words with 7 letters?

PLAY