Word of the Week (WOW) – Leviathan

wow

Word of the Week (WOW) is a weekly challenge created by Heena Rathore P. It’s a fun way to improve vocabulary by learning new words every week.

To participate, simply do a post with your word and leave the link as a comment on Heena’s WOW post for this week (above link). It’s a nice post to do and will give you some practise with a dictionary, of which there are several online. Illustrations are by no means necessary, but it’s up to you.

I’m up to the letter L this week. I started off by just choosing a word at random (perspicacious). Since then, I’ve been working through the alphabet, so I’ll be looking for a good word beginning with M next week.

So, here is my WOW for this week:

leviathan

 Word: Leviathan

Pronunciation:  le·vi·a·than  [li-vahyuh-thuhn;  luh- veye -uh-thuhn]

Part of Speech:  noun

Adjective: leviathan – meaning very large; gargantuan

 Meaning:

1. (often initial capital letter: LeviathanBible. a sea monster.

The Destruction of Leviathan.

The Destruction of Leviathan. An engraving from 1865 by Gustave Doré

Lev-Beh-Ziz

Levianthan sea monster with Behemoth the land monster and Ziz the air monster. Public domain via Wikimedia.

2. any huge marine animal, as the whale.

Anim1754_-_Flickr_-_NOAA_Photo_Library

Blue whales grow up to 30 meters in length and weigh up to 190 tonnes/160tons. They are the largest existing animal and the heaviest that has ever lived. Blue whale. Image from Wikimedia Commons. Author: NOAA Photo Library.

Giant_Manta_AdF

These giant manta rays can have a wingspan of uo to 7 meters. They swim in the strong currents, slowly flapping their wings with amazing elegance. Author> Arturu de Frias Marques at Raja Ampat, West Papu, Indonesia.

3. anything of immense size and power, as a huge, oceangoing ship.

4. initial capital letter, italics: Leviathan) a philosophical work (1651) by ThomasHobbes dealing with the political organisation of society.

Leviathan_by_Thomas_Hobbes

Frontpiece of “Levianthan by Thomas Hobbes” – author unknown. 1661

Synonyms:

behemoth, blockbuster, colossus, colossal, dinosaur, dreadnaught, jumbo, elephant, elephantine, Goliath, jumbo, giant, mammoth, mastodon, monster, monstrous, titan, whale, whopper, whopping, gargantuan, astronomical, immense, supersize

Antonyms: 

diminutive, dwarf, half-pint, midget, mite, peewee, pygmy/pigmy, runt, shrimp, infinitesimal, Lilliputian, micro, miniscule, tiny, teeny, microscopic

Word Origin:

1350-1400; Middle English levyathan < Late Latin leviathan < Hebrew: liwyāthān

Use in a Sentence:

1. It can be a great challenge to drive a wheeled leviathan in rush-hour traffic.

shutterstock_1285009

2. The tree was a leviathan among redwoods.

Redwood_large_sherman

Giant redwood tree ‘Sherman’ in the Sequoia National Park, California, USA Source: de.wikipedia uploaded by de: Benutzer: Pc fish

3. The man in front of us was a leviathan! He took up several seats at the theatre.

4. (Adjective use) The Titanic was a leviathan ship by the standards of the time.

shutterstock_173832800

If you’d like to see more interesting words, visit Heena’s page:

Word Treasure

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About milliethom

I am a reader and writer of historical fiction with a keen interest in the Earth's history and all it involves, both physically and socially. I like nothing better than to be outdoors, especially in faraway places, and baking is something I do when my eyes need respite from my computer screen.
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13 Responses to Word of the Week (WOW) – Leviathan

  1. scrapydotwo says:

    Very interesting!

  2. Bekki Hill says:

    And interesting choice, but I have to confess, I’ve never liked the word leviathan. To me it sounds like a word from an ill-thought out made up language. But that’s probably just my odd little brain.

    • milliethom says:

      It’s not a word I’d think of to use in my writing either, Bekki. It’s closely linked with the OT ‘monster’, of course, but even as a word to describe something huge, it’s not the prettiest sounding choice. I just though it was ‘Interesting’ rather tnan nice. Thanks for commenting. 🙂

      • Bekki Hill says:

        Sorry, didn’t mean to make it sound as if I was complaining about your choice. I thought it was a great choice, and partly because it brought such a negative reaction in me, then my brain went ticking on wondering why I found it so irksome. As for using in writing – I’ve a lot of 18th century coastal folk living in my head right now, so maybe I could just squeeze it in 🙂

      • milliethom says:

        I didn’t take it as criticism, Bekki! Please don’t worry on that score. All opinions are welcomed by me. I really do agree with you about the word. I liked a lot of pretty sounding words beginning with L but felt they were already well known and no one would be interested. Leviathan isn’t one you hear every day – not surprisingly, I suppose! Thank you again. 🙂

      • milliethom says:

        THe 18th century coastal folk sound fascinating. I take it that’s the novel you’re writing at the moment? I hope it’s all going well. Another historical fiction writer… Excellent. 🙂

      • Bekki Hill says:

        It is my novel. It’s rearranging itself at the moment, so seriously have got me thinking if there’s room for a sea monster. Off to walk Mr Hicks and have a think about that one. Thanks for the inspiration. Hope your novel’s going well.

      • milliethom says:

        Thanks. My novel’s actually moving now. Better a late start than never!

      • Bekki Hill says:

        Great to hear you’ve got going. Have fun!

  3. Interesting selection of the word! I would love to see whale as leviathan, but not sea monster 😛

  4. Nice word Millie, though it sounds a bit odd. I guess I won’t be using it anytime soon. But it’s always good to know the meaning of such words 🙂
    Thanks.

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