na·​iad | \ ˈnā-əd How to pronounce naiad (audio) , ˈnī-, -ˌad How to pronounce naiad (audio) \
plural naiads or naiades\ ˈnā-​ə-​ˌdēz How to pronounce naiad (audio) , ˈnī-​ \

Definition of naiad

1 : any of the nymphs in classical mythology living in and giving life to lakes, rivers, springs, and fountains
2 : an aquatic insect nymph (as of a mayfly, dragonfly, damselfly, or stone fly)
3 : any of a genus (Najas of the family Najadaceae) of submerged aquatic plants

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Examples of naiad in a Sentence

in Greek mythology, naiads supposedly drowned the young men with whom they became enamored students in science class learning how to distinguish a dragonfly naiad from an earthworm
Recent Examples on the Web The lovely Arcadia region, lush with cypress, poplar, and olive groves, bears traces of the virgin wilderness where nymphs, naiads, and the horned god Pan once frolicked. Thomas Linkel, National Geographic, 18 July 2019

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

First Known Use of naiad

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for naiad

Middle English, from Middle French or Latin; Middle French naïade, from Latin naiad-, naias, from Greek, from nan to flow — more at nourish

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

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Cite this Entry

“Naiad.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for naiad


na·​iad | \ ˈnā-əd How to pronounce naiad (audio) \
plural naiads or naiades\ ˈnā-​ə-​ˌdēz \

Kids Definition of naiad

: a nymph believed in ancient times to be living in lakes, rivers, and springs

More from Merriam-Webster on naiad

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for naiad

Nglish: Translation of naiad for Spanish Speakers


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