sphinx

noun \ ˈsfiŋ(k)s \
Updated on: 9 Dec 2017

Definition of sphinx

plural sphinxes or sphinges play \ˈsfin-ˌjēz\
1 a capitalized : a winged female monster in Greek mythology having a woman's head and a lion's body and noted for killing anyone unable to answer its riddle
b : an enigmatic or mysterious person
  • she is a sphinx whose features hold a blank fascination
2 : an ancient Egyptian image in the form of a recumbent lion having a man's head, a ram's head, or a hawk's head

sphinxlike

play \ˈsfiŋ(k)s-ˌlīk\ adjective

Examples of sphinx in a Sentence

  1. a statue of the Sphinx

Recent Examples of sphinx from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of sphinx

Latin, from Greek Sphinx, Sphix


SPHINX Defined for English Language Learners

sphinx

noun

Definition of sphinx for English Language Learners

  • in ancient Greek and Egyptian stories : a creature with the body of a lion and the head of a person; also : something (such as a statue) in the shape of a sphinx


SPHINX Defined for Kids

sphinx

noun \ ˈsfiŋks \

Definition of sphinx for Students

: a mythical figure of ancient Egypt having the body of a lion and the head of a man, a ram, or a hawk

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