Dithyramb Definition

Poetry Definition of Dithyramb

Greek lyric poem (possibly invented by Arion) sung in honour of the God Bacchus. Alexander's Feast by John Dryden is a more recent example.


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Standard Definition

[n] (ancient Greece) a passionate hymn (usually in honor of Dionysus)
[n] a wildly enthusiastic speech or piece of writing

Misc. Definitions

\Dith"y*ramb\, n. [L. dithyrambus, Gr. ? a kind of lyric poetry in honor of Bacchus; also, a name of Bacchus; of unknown origin: cf. F. dithyrambe.] A kind of lyric poetry in honor of Bacchus, usually sung by a band of revelers to a flute accompaniment; hence, in general, a poem written in a wild irregular strain. --Bentley.

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