ancient1 /ˈeɪnʃ(ə)nt/


I. adjective

1. belonging to the very distant past and no longer in existence

the ancient civilizations of the Mediterranean.
2. having been in existence for a very long time

ancient forests.
‹humorous› showing or feeling signs of age or wear

an ancient pair of jeans
you make me feel ancient.
II. noun

‹humorous› an old man

a solitary ancient in a tweed jacket.
III. phrases

1. the Ancient of Days
a biblical title for God.
2. the ancients
a. the people of ancient times, especially the Greeks and Romans of classical antiquity.
b. the classical Greek and Roman authors.

a thorough knowledge of the ancients is a prerequisite of criticism.
IV. derivatives


– origin late Middle English: from Old French ancien, based on Latin ante ‘before’.

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