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[dahy-uh-dem] /ˈdaɪ əˌdɛm/
a crown.
a cloth headband, sometimes adorned with jewels, formerly worn by Oriental kings.
royal dignity or authority.
verb (used with object)
to adorn with or as if with a diadem; crown.
Origin of diadem
1250-1300; Middle English diademe (< Anglo-French) < Latin diadēma < Greek diádēma fillet, band, equivalent to diadē- (verbid stem of diadeîn to bind round + -ma noun suffix Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for diadem
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He next surveyed the picture of the young lady,—a maiden robed in jewelled attire with pearl necklace, diadem, and sceptre.

    The Shadow of the Czar John R. Carling
  • Inside three minutes the two craft were clear of the diadem.

    The World Peril of 1910 George Griffith
  • This crown of mine'—the King laid his hand upon the diadem he wore—'often gives me a headache.

  • Next to these came Perseus' chariot, in which his armor was placed, and on that his diadem.

  • The queen's diadem, as it is called, is an elegant affair, rich in huge diamonds and pearls.

    Over the Ocean Curtis Guild
  • How glossy black was that hair with its diadem of white roses!

    Wagner, the Wehr-Wolf George W. M. Reynolds
  • When he appeared before Queen Anne of Austria, the woman who wore a diadem thought it a privilege to kiss his mutilated hands.

    Voyage of the Paper Canoe Nathaniel H. Bishop
  • The open wound in the forehead of the slain Christian shone like a diadem.

    What the Moon Saw: and Other Tales Hans Christian Andersen
British Dictionary definitions for diadem


a royal crown, esp a light jewelled circlet
royal dignity or power
(transitive) to adorn or crown with or as with a diadem
Word Origin
C13: from Latin diadēma, from Greek: fillet, royal headdress, from diadein to bind around, from dia- + dein to bind
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 diadem

late 13c., from Old French diademe and directly from Latin diadema "cloth band worn around the head as a sign of royalty," from Greek diadema, from diadein "to bind across," from dia- "across" (see dia-) + dein "to bind," related to desmos "band," from PIE *de- "to bind." Used of the headband worn by Persian kings and adopted by Alexander the Great and his successors.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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diadem in the Bible

the tiara of a king (Ezek. 21:26; Isa. 28:5; 62:3); the turban (Job 29:14). In the New Testament a careful distinction is drawn between the diadem as a badge of royalty (Rev. 12:3; 13:1; 19:12) and the crown as a mark of distinction in private life. It is not known what the ancient Jewish "diadem" was. It was the mark of Oriental sovereigns. (See CROWN.)

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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