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Calypso

[kuh-lip-soh] /kəˈlɪp soʊ/
noun, plural Calypsos.
1.
Also, Kalypso. Classical Mythology. a sea nymph who detained Odysseus on the island of Ogygia for seven years.
2.
(lowercase). Also called fairy-slipper. a terrestrial orchid, Calypso bulbosa, of the Northern Hemisphere, having a single variegated purple, yellow, and white flower.
3.
(lowercase) a musical style of West Indian origin, influenced by jazz, usually having topical, often improvised, lyrics.
verb (used without object)
4.
(lowercase) to sing or dance to calypso.
Origin
the name of the musical style is of obscure origin and perhaps only copies the spelling of Calypso the sea nymph
Related forms
calypsonian
[kuh-lip-soh-nee-uh n, kal-ip-] /kə lɪpˈsoʊ ni ən, ˌkæl ɪp-/ (Show IPA),
noun, adjective
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for Calypso

calypso1

/kəˈlɪpsəʊ/
noun (pl) -sos
1.
a popular type of satirical, usually topical, West Indian ballad, esp from Trinidad, usually extemporized to a percussive syncopated accompaniment
2.
a dance done to the rhythm of this song
Word Origin
C20: probably from Calypso

calypso2

/kəˈlɪpsəʊ/
noun (pl) -sos
1.
a rare N temperate orchid, Calypso (or Cytherea) bulbosa, whose flower is pink or white with purple and yellow markings
Word Origin
C19: named after Calypso

Calypso

/kəˈlɪpsəʊ/
noun
1.
(Greek myth) (in Homer's Odyssey) a sea nymph who detained Odysseus on the island of Ogygia for seven years
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for Calypso

sea nymph in the "Odyssey," literally "hidden, hider" (perhaps originally a death goddess) from Greek kalyptein "to cover, conceal," from PIE *kel- "to cover, conceal, save," root of English Hell (see cell). The West Indian type of song is so called from 1934, of unknown origin or connection to the nymph.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for Calypso

in Greek mythology, the daughter of the Titan Atlas (or Oceanus or Nereus), a nymph of the mythical island of Ogygia. In Homer's Odyssey, Book V (also Books I and VII), she entertained the Greek hero Odysseus for seven years, but she could not overcome his longing for home even by promising him immortality. At last the god Hermes was sent by Zeus, the king of the gods, to ask her to release Odysseus. According to Hesiod's Theogony, she bore Odysseus twin sons, Nausithous and Nausinous.

Learn more about Calypso with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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