follow Dictionary.com

What's the "een" in Halloween?

Saturnalia

[sat-er-ney-lee-uh, -neyl-yuh] /ˌsæt ərˈneɪ li ə, -ˈneɪl yə/
noun, plural Saturnalia, Saturnalias.
1.
(sometimes used with a plural verb) the festival of Saturn, celebrated in December in ancient Rome as a time of unrestrained merrymaking.
2.
(lowercase) unrestrained revelry; orgy.
Origin
1585-1595
1585-95; < Latin Sāturnālia, equivalent to Sāturn(us) Saturn + -ālia, neuter plural of -ālis -al1
Related forms
Saturnalian, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for saturnalian

Saturnalia

/ˌsætəˈneɪlɪə/
noun (pl) -lia, -lias
1.
an ancient Roman festival celebrated in December: renowned for its general merrymaking
2.
(sometimes not capital) a period or occasion of wild revelry
Derived Forms
Saturnalian, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Latin Sāturnālis relating to Saturn1
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for saturnalian

saturnalia

n.

time of merrymaking, 1590s, from Latin Saturnalia, ancient Roman festivals of Saturn (held in December), a time of merrymaking for all, from neuter plural of adjective Saturnalis "pertaining to Saturn," from Saturnus (see Saturn). They correspond to the Greek Kronia. The extended sense of "period of unrestrained revelry" is first attested 1782. Related: Saturnalian.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for Saturnalia

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for saturnalian

11
0
Scrabble Words With Friends