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A major difficulty is that the answer to the Riddle of the Sphinx is partly a product of the answers that we already have given to the riddle in its various forms.
Gregory Bateson

Meaning of "the Sphinx" in the English dictionary

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DICTIONARY
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PRONUNCIATION OF THE SPHINX

the Sphinx play
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WHAT DOES THE SPHINX MEAN IN ENGLISH?

the Sphinx

Sphinx

A sphinx is a mythical creature with, as a minimum, the body of a lion and a human head. In Greek tradition, it has the haunches of a lion, sometimes with the wings of a great bird, and the face of a human. It is mythicised as treacherous and merciless. Those who cannot answer its riddle suffer a fate typical in such mythological stories, as they are killed and eaten by this ravenous monster. This deadly version of a sphinx appears in the myth and drama of Oedipus. Unlike the Greek sphinx which was a woman, the Egyptian sphinx is typically shown as a man. In addition, the Egyptian sphinx was viewed as benevolent, but having a ferocious strength similar to the malevolent Greek version and were both thought of as a guardian often flanking the entrances to temples. In European decorative art, the sphinx enjoyed a major revival during the Renaissance. Later, the sphinx image, something very similar to the original Ancient Egyptian concept, was exported into many other cultures, albeit often interpreted quite differently due to translations of descriptions of the originals and the evolution of the concept in relation to other cultural traditions.

Definition of the Sphinx in the English dictionary

The definition of the Sphinx in the dictionary is a monster with a woman's head and a lion's body. She lay outside Thebes, asking travellers a riddle and killing them when they failed to answer it. Oedipus answered the riddle and the Sphinx then killed herself. Other definition of the Sphinx is the huge statue of a sphinx near the pyramids at El Gîza in Egypt, of which the head is a carved portrait of the fourth-dynasty Pharaoh, Chephrēn.

WORDS THAT BEGIN LIKE THE SPHINX

the Solent
the Song of Solomon
the Soo Canals
the Sorbonne
the Sound
the south
the South Island
the Southeast
the Southwest
the Spanish
the Spirit
the spiritual
the spotlight
the squits
the stage
the Stannaries
the Stans
the Star-Spangled Banner
the Stars and Bars
the Stars and Stripes

WORDS THAT END LIKE THE SPHINX

androsphinx
Bronx
hieracosphinx
jinx
jynx
larynx
lynx
Manx
meninx
minx
nasopharynx
phalanx
pharynx
phorminx
salpinx
sphinx
Sphynx
syrinx
thanx
the Bronx

Synonyms and antonyms of the Sphinx in the English dictionary of synonyms

SYNONYMS

Translation of «the Sphinx» into 25 languages

TRANSLATOR
online translator

TRANSLATION OF THE SPHINX

Find out the translation of the Sphinx to 25 languages with our English multilingual translator.
The translations of the Sphinx from English to other languages presented in this section have been obtained through automatic statistical translation; where the essential translation unit is the word «the Sphinx» in English.

Translator English - Chinese

狮身人面像
1,325 millions of speakers

Translator English - Spanish

la Esfinge
570 millions of speakers

English

the Sphinx
510 millions of speakers

Translator English - Hindi

स्फिंक्स
380 millions of speakers
ar

Translator English - Arabic

أبو الهول
280 millions of speakers

Translator English - Russian

Сфинкс
278 millions of speakers

Translator English - Portuguese

Esfinge
270 millions of speakers

Translator English - Bengali

স্পিনেক্স
260 millions of speakers

Translator English - French

le Sphinx
220 millions of speakers

Translator English - Malay

Sphinx
190 millions of speakers

Translator English - German

die Sphinx
180 millions of speakers

Translator English - Japanese

スフィンクス
130 millions of speakers

Translator English - Korean

스핑크스
85 millions of speakers

Translator English - Javanese

Ing Sphinx
85 millions of speakers
vi

Translator English - Vietnamese

Nhân sư
80 millions of speakers

Translator English - Tamil

ஸ்பிங்க்ஸ்
75 millions of speakers

Translator English - Marathi

स्फिंक्स
75 millions of speakers

Translator English - Turkish

Sfenks
70 millions of speakers

Translator English - Italian

la Sfinge
65 millions of speakers

Translator English - Polish

Sfinks
50 millions of speakers

Translator English - Ukrainian

сфінкс
40 millions of speakers

Translator English - Romanian

Sfinxul
30 millions of speakers
el

Translator English - Greek

η Σφίγγα
15 millions of speakers
af

Translator English - Afrikaans

die Sphinx
14 millions of speakers
sv

Translator English - Swedish

Sfinxen
10 millions of speakers
no

Translator English - Norwegian

Sfinxen
5 millions of speakers

Trends of use of the Sphinx

TRENDS

TENDENCIES OF USE OF THE TERM «THE SPHINX»

The term «the Sphinx» is regularly used and occupies the 62.158 position in our list of most widely used terms in the English dictionary.
0
100%
FREQUENCY
Regularly used
71
/100
The map shown above gives the frequency of use of the term «the Sphinx» in the different countries.
Principal search tendencies and common uses of the Sphinx
List of principal searches undertaken by users to access our English online dictionary and most widely used expressions with the word «the Sphinx».

FREQUENCY OF USE OF THE TERM «THE SPHINX» OVER TIME

The graph expresses the annual evolution of the frequency of use of the word «the Sphinx» during the past 500 years. Its implementation is based on analysing how often the term «the Sphinx» appears in digitalised printed sources in English between the year 1500 and the present day.

Examples of use in the English literature, quotes and news about the Sphinx

EXAMPLES

4 QUOTES WITH «THE SPHINX»

Famous quotes and sentences with the word the Sphinx.
1
Gregory Bateson
It is of first-class importance that our answer to the Riddle of the Sphinx should be in step with how we conduct our civilisation, and this should in turn be in step with the actual workings of living systems.
2
Gregory Bateson
A major difficulty is that the answer to the Riddle of the Sphinx is partly a product of the answers that we already have given to the riddle in its various forms.
3
Gregory Bateson
It is to the Riddle of the Sphinx that I have devoted fifty years of professional life as an anthropologist.
4
Pierre Loti
The pyramid once passed there was still a short way to go before we confronted the Sphinx, in the middle of what our contemporaries have left him of his desert.

10 ENGLISH BOOKS RELATING TO «THE SPHINX»

Discover the use of the Sphinx in the following bibliographical selection. Books relating to the Sphinx and brief extracts from same to provide context of its use in English literature.
1
Book of the Sphinx
The Sphinx, that icon painted, sculpted, engraved, and exalted in poetry, fiction, and music, so impressed the philosopher Hegel that he pronounced the creature “the symbol of the symbolic itself.” With a wealth of illustrations, Book ...
Willis Goth Regier, 2004
2
Sphinx
It was the magic and mystery of an empire long past that beautiful Erica Baron came to explore.
Robin Cook, 1983
3
The Sphinx in the City: Urban Life, the Control of Disorder, ...
"Adopting the guise of a flaneur, Wilson reconsiders the classical imagery of the city from the viewpoints of diverse groups of women: bourgeois wives, prostitutes, transvestite writers, and others.
Elizabeth Wilson, 1992
4
Automatic Speech Recognition: The Development of the SPHINX ...
Speech Recognition has a long history of being one of the difficult problems in Artificial Intelligence and Computer Science.
Kai-Fu Lee, 1989
5
From Atlantis To The Sphinx: Recovering the Lost Wisdom of ...
The compelling argument of this bestselling book is that, thousands of years before Ancient Egypt and Greece held sway, there was a great civilisation whose ships travelled the world and who possessed some knowledge system that offered a ...
Colin Wilson, 2011
6
Oedipus and the Sphinx: The Threshold Myth from Sophocles ...
Identifying the story as a threshold myth—in which the hero crosses over into an unknown and dangerous realm where rules and limits are not known—Oedipus and the Sphinx offers a fresh account of this mythic encounter and how it deals ...
Almut-Barbara Renger, 2013
7
The eyes of the Sphinx: the newest evidence of ...
New interpretations of ancient writings, the discovery of hidden chambers in Egypt, and other findings provide evidence of extraterrestrial contact with the ancient cultures of Earth
Erich von Däniken, 1996
8
Riddles of the Sphinx
I strongly recommend this book.
Paul Jordan, 1998
9
Return of the Sphinx
Set in Montreal and Ottawa, this book continues the story of Alan Ainslie, idealist, patriot and intellectual, who has a special insight into Russian policy.
Hugh MacLennan, 2009
10
50 Years of Great Magic from "The Sphinx"
Christopher Milbourne presents a selection of classic magic tricks originally published over the course of 50 years in "The Sphinx," the most famous magazine for magicians.
Christopher Milbourne, 2008

8 NEWS ITEMS WHICH INCLUDE THE TERM «THE SPHINX»

Find out what the national and international press are talking about and how the term the Sphinx is used in the context of the following news items.
1
ISIS: Destroying Egypt's Sphinx, Pyramids Is 'Religious Duty'
ISIS “caliph” Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi told followers of his terror group that destroying Egypt's national monuments, such as the pyramids and the sphinx, is a ... «Breitbart News, Jul 15»
2
Sphinx Organization's Aaron P. Dworkin Will Go to University of …
Since the violinist Aaron P. Dworkin founded the Sphinx Organization nearly two decades ago to encourage diversity in the stubbornly homogeneous field of ... «New York Times, Mar 15»
3
ISIS War On Culture: Terrorist Group Calls For Destruction Of Great …
The question that needs to be answered is why ISIS has suddenly targeted the Great Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. Most news outlets report that ISIS, though ... «The Inquisitr, Mar 15»
4
Great Sphinx of Giza's courtyard to reopen
The Sphinx courtyard will be opened for the first time since the restoration of the monument [began]”, Mohammed al-Damati, Egypt's antiquities minister, told ... «Telegraph.co.uk, Nov 14»
5
Giant sphinx from 'Ten Commandments' film unearthed 91 years later
The film crew originally built the sphinxes' body parts in Los Angeles, and transported them about 165 miles to Guadalupe, where they assembled them into ... «Fox News, Oct 14»
6
Italian police find stolen Egyptian sphinx
Police visited the house of the driver and found the sphinx, with other artefacts thought to have been stolen from an Etruscan cemetery. The Montem Rossulum ... «BBC News, Dec 12»
7
"The Sphinx and Pyramids Must be Destroyed"
Egypt's Muslim fundamentalists are now calling for the destruction of the Pyramids and the Great Sphinx of Giza under the pretext that Islam prohibits idols. «Gatestone Institute, Nov 12»
8
Obama Checks Out Sphinx And Pyramids
Everyone says it when they see the pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. ... He led the way in and around the pyramids and the Sphinx, including a visit to the Tomb ... «CBS News, Jun 09»

REFERENCE
« EDUCALINGO. The Sphinx [online]. Available <https://educalingo.com/en/dic-en/the-sphinx>. Aug 2019 ».
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