Dictionary > Dragon


1. A fabulous animal, generally represented as a monstrous winged serpent or lizard, with a crested head and enormous claws, and regarded as very powerful and ferocious. The dragons which appear in early paintings and sculptures are invariably representations of a winged crocodile. (Fairholt)
in Scripture the term dragon refers to any great monster, whether of the land or sea, usually to some kind of serpent or reptile, sometimes to land serpents of a powerful and deadly kind. It is also applied metaphorically to Satan. Thou breakest the heads of the dragons in the waters. (Ps. Lxxiv. 13) Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder; the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet. (Ps. Xci. 13) He laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the devil and Satan, and bound him a thousand years. (rev. Xx. 2)
2. A fierce, violent person, especially. A woman.
3. (Science: astronomy) a constellation of the northern hemisphere figured as a dragon; draco.
4. A luminous exhalation from marshy grounds, seeming to move through the air as a winged serpent.
5. A short musket hooked to a swivel attached to a soldiers belt; so called from a representation of a dragons head at the muzzle.
6. (Science: zoology) a small arboreal lizard of the genus draco, of several species, found in the East Indies and southern asia. Five or six of the hind ribs, on each side, are prolonged and covered with weblike skin, forming a sort of wing. These prolongations aid them in making long leaps from tree to tree. Called also flying lizard.
7. (Science: zoology) a variety of carrier pigeon.
8. A fabulous winged creature, sometimes borne as a charge in a coat of arms.
dragon is often used adjectively, or in combination, in the sense of relating to, resembling, or characteristic of, a dragon.
(Science: botany) dragon arum, a west african liliaceous tree (dracaena draco), yielding one of the resins called dragons blood. See dracaena. Dragon water, a medicinal remedy very popular in the earlier half of the 17th century. Dragon water may do good upon him. . Flying dragon, a large meteoric fireball; a bolide.
Origin: f. Dragon, L. Draco, fr. Gr, prob. Fr, to look (akin to Skr. Dar to see), and so called from its terrible eyes. Cf. Drake a dragon, dragoon.