Word of the Day : February 23, 2011


adjective ih-DAY-shus


1 : having a huge appetite : ravenous

2 : excessively eager : insatiable

Did You Know?

"Tempus edax rerum." That wise Latin line by the Roman poet Ovid translates as "Time, the devourer of all things." Ovid's correlation between rapaciousness and time is appropriate to a discussion of "edacious." That English word is a descendant of Latin "edax," which is a derivative of the verb "edere," meaning "to eat." In its earliest known English uses, "edacious" meant "of or relating to eating." It later came to be used generally as a synonym of "voracious," and it has often been used specifically in contexts referring to time. That's how Scottish essayist and historian Thomas Carlyle used it when he referred to events "swallowed in the depths of edacious Time.


My edacious dining companion could always be counted on to order the largest -- and often most expensive -- item on the menu.

"My adoration is edacious, idolatrous. I have loved a lot of cakes. And I have loved some of them in shameful ways." -- From Leslie F. Miller's 2009 memoir Let Me Eat Cake: A Celebration of Flour, Sugar, Butter, Eggs, Vanilla, Baking Powder, and a Pinch of Salt

Word Family Quiz

What 6-letter relative of "edacious" means "suitable or safe to eat"? The answer is ...


More Words of the Day

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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