sarcophagus was our Word of the Day on 08/10/2011. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of sarcophagus in a Sentence
the crypt under the abbey church contains the sarcophagus of the monastery's founding abbot
Recent Examples of sarcophagus from the Web
In a Facebook post, Dr. Mostafa Waziri, general secretary of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities, announced that the 6-foot high sarcophagus, which is 8.7-feet long and 5.4-feet wide, is the largest ever found in Alexandria.
The researchers suspect that additional ghost signals may have come from Tut's massive quartzite sarcophagus, which takes up much of the central burial chamber.
Behind the gates, rising and falling in the darkness of an open shaft, was the old-fashioned elevator box, made of heavy carved wood, like some Byzantine sarcophagus.
But many items do remain in Egypt, including the mummy of the 19-year-old ruler, the quartzite sarcophagus with granite lid, the gilded wooden outer coffin and a series of wall paintings.
The sarcophagus was one of four ancient and intricately designed Egyptian coffins — three of them with full-bodied mummies — acquired around 1860 by Charles Nicholson, a former chancellor of Sydney University.
The outside of the sarcophagus was intriguing enough: The face of a woman at rest was carved into the dark wood.
Since then, the 2,500-year-old sarcophagus — assumed to be empty — sat in a museum, according to BBC.
While drivers and passengers might unleash the occasional unintelligible, adrenaline-fueled pump-up scream at one another, the inside of this giant snow sarcophagus is too loud and too intense to allow for anything else.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sarcophagus.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Body-eating coffins might sound like the stuff of horror films, but "flesh-eating stone" does play a role in the etymology of sarcophagus. That creepy-sounding phrase is a literal translation of "sarkophagos," the Greek word that underlies our English term. It's not clear whether the Romans truly believed that a certain type of limestone from the region around Troy would dissolve flesh (and thus was desirable for making coffins). That assertion came from Roman scholar Pliny the Elder, but he also reported such phenomena as dog-headed people and elephants who wrote Greek. But there’s no doubt that the ancient Greek word for the limestone, "sarkophagos," was formed by combining sark-, meaning "flesh," with a derivative of "phagein," a verb meaning "to eat."
Origin and Etymology of sarcophagus
SARCOPHAGUS Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of sarcophagus for English Language Learners
: a stone coffin from ancient times
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