Word of the Day : July 6, 2019

planet

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noun PLAN-ut

Definition

1 a (1) : any of the large bodies that revolve around the sun in the solar system (2) : a similar body associated with another star

b : earth —usually used with the

c : any of the seven celestial bodies sun, moon, Venus, Jupiter, Mars, Mercury, and Saturn that in ancient belief have motions of their own among the fixed stars

2 : a celestial body held to influence the fate of human beings

3 : a person or thing of great importance : luminary

Did You Know?

Planet goes back to ancient Greek planēt- (literally, "wanderer"), which is derived from planasthai, a Greek verb which means "to wander." The word was originally applied to any of seven visible celestial bodies which appeared to move independently of the fixed stars—the sun, the moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. In line with astronomical discovery and advancement, planet began to be used specifically of the rocky or gaseous bodies that orbit around the sun—a definition which excluded the moon and the sun but included the Earth and, as they were discovered, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. In 2006, the International Astronomical Union developed a narrower definition of planet, effectively demoting Pluto to the status of a "dwarf planet," a celestial body that is spherical and orbits the sun but is not large enough to disturb other objects from its orbit.


Examples

"Dell is the father of Steph Curry, and Steph (in case you've been living on another planet) plays for the Golden State Warriors, the team that Drake's beloved Raptors have to beat if they're going to bring an NBA Championship home." — Charlotte Wilder, Yahoo! Sports, 31 May 2019

"Any good project requires the planets lining up, and Nick was definitely a major planet. A friend introduced us and I knew he was the right person within about a minute." — Peter Bahouth, quoted on Mother Nature Network, 18 March 2015



Test Your Vocabulary

What type of celestial body does the term minor planet refer to?

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