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heaven

[hev-uh n] /ˈhɛv ən/
noun
1.
the abode of God, the angels, and the spirits of the righteous after death; the place or state of existence of the blessed after the mortal life.
2.
(initial capital letter). Often, Heavens. the celestial powers; God.
3.
a metonym for God (used in expressions of emphasis, surprise, etc.):
For heaven's sake!
4.
heavens.
  1. (used interjectionally to express emphasis, surprise, etc.):
    Heavens, what a cold room!
  2. (used with a singular verb) a wooden roof or canopy over the outer stage of an Elizabethan theater.
5.
Usually, heavens. the sky, firmament, or expanse of space surrounding the earth.
6.
a place or state of supreme happiness:
She made his life a heaven on earth.
Idioms
7.
move heaven and earth, to do one's utmost to effect an end; make a supreme effort:
She promised to move heaven and earth to be there for our wedding anniversary.
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English heven, Old English heofon; cognate with Middle Low German heven; akin to Old Norse himinn, Gothic himins, German Himmel
Related forms
heavenless, adjective
underheaven, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for heaven
  • Thanks heaven she finally got around to it: the results are wonderful.
  • Lazar could have a victory and win an earthly kingdom, or he could choose martyrdom and a place for his people in heaven.
  • Judged on physical and ecological grounds, it's salmon heaven.
  • The important thing to remember is that when you die, you go to heaven and you party forever.
  • Plant this month and you'll be in tomato heaven by midsummer.
  • heaven forbid there be any expectation that students pursue actual disciplinary content.
  • The placement of the body is said to signify honor and bring the dead closer to heaven.
  • Even people who want to go to heaven don't want to die to get there.
  • What lovely slices of heaven with completely different flavors.
  • But give them some bitter carrot tops and they're in chicken heaven.
British Dictionary definitions for heaven

heaven

/ˈhɛvən/
noun
1.
(sometimes capital) (Christianity)
  1. the abode of God and the angels
  2. a place or state of communion with God after death Compare hell
2.
(usually pl) the sky, firmament or space surrounding the earth
3.
(in any of various mythologies) a place, such as Elysium or Valhalla, to which those who have died in the gods' favour are brought to dwell in happiness
4.
a place or state of joy and happiness
5.
(sing) or plural; sometimes capital. God or the gods, used in exclamatory phrases of surprise, exasperation, etc: for heaven's sake, heavens above
6.
in seventh heaven, ecstatically happy
7.
move heaven and earth, to do everything possible (to achieve something)
Word Origin
Old English heofon; related to Old Saxon heban
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 heaven
n.

Old English heofon "home of God," earlier "sky, firmament," probably from Proto-Germanic *hibin-, dissimilated from *himin- (cf. Low German heben, Old Norse himinn, Gothic himins, Old Frisian himul, Dutch hemel, German Himmel "heaven, sky"), perhaps from PIE root *kem-/*kam- "to cover" (cf. chemise). [Watkins derives it elaborately from PIE *ak- "sharp" via *akman- "stone, sharp stone," then "stony vault of heaven"].

Plural use in sense of "sky" is probably from Ptolemaic theory of space composed of many spheres, but it also formerly was used in the same sense as the singular in Biblical language, as a translation of Hebrew plural shamayim. Heaven-sent (adj.) attested from 1640s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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heaven in Culture
heaven (or heavens)

The dwelling place of God, the angels, and the souls of those who have gained salvation; a place of the greatest peace and beauty. (Compare hell.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for heaven
The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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heaven in the Bible

(1.) Definitions. The phrase "heaven and earth" is used to indicate the whole universe (Gen. 1:1; Jer. 23:24; Acts 17:24). According to the Jewish notion there were three heavens, (a) The firmament, as "fowls of the heaven" (Gen. 2:19; 7:3, 23; Ps. 8:8, etc.), "the eagles of heaven" (Lam. 4:19), etc. (b) The starry heavens (Deut. 17:3; Jer. 8:2; Matt. 24:29). (c) "The heaven of heavens," or "the third heaven" (Deut. 10:14; 1 Kings 8:27; Ps. 115:16; 148:4; 2 Cor. 12:2). (2.) Meaning of words in the original, (a) The usual Hebrew word for "heavens" is _shamayim_, a plural form meaning "heights," "elevations" (Gen. 1:1; 2:1). (b) The Hebrew word _marom_ is also used (Ps. 68:18; 93:4; 102:19, etc.) as equivalent to _shamayim_, "high places," "heights." (c) Heb. galgal, literally a "wheel," is rendered "heaven" in Ps. 77:18 (R.V., "whirlwind"). (d) Heb. shahak, rendered "sky" (Deut. 33:26; Job 37:18; Ps. 18:11), plural "clouds" (Job 35:5; 36:28; Ps. 68:34, marg. "heavens"), means probably the firmament. (e) Heb. rakia is closely connected with (d), and is rendered "firmamentum" in the Vulgate, whence our "firmament" (Gen. 1:6; Deut. 33:26, etc.), regarded as a solid expanse. (3.) Metaphorical meaning of term. Isa. 14:13, 14; "doors of heaven" (Ps. 78:23); heaven "shut" (1 Kings 8:35); "opened" (Ezek. 1:1). (See 1 Chr. 21:16.) (4.) Spiritual meaning. The place of the everlasting blessedness of the righteous; the abode of departed spirits. (a) Christ calls it his "Father's house" (John 14:2). (b) It is called "paradise" (Luke 23:43; 2 Cor. 12:4; Rev. 2:7). (c) "The heavenly Jerusalem" (Gal. 4: 26; Heb. 12:22; Rev. 3:12). (d) The "kingdom of heaven" (Matt. 25:1; James 2:5). (e) The "eternal kingdom" (2 Pet. 1:11). (f) The "eternal inheritance" (1 Pet. 1:4; Heb. 9:15). (g) The "better country" (Heb. 11:14, 16). (h) The blessed are said to "sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob," and to be "in Abraham's bosom" (Luke 16:22; Matt. 8:11); to "reign with Christ" (2 Tim. 2:12); and to enjoy "rest" (Heb. 4:10, 11). In heaven the blessedness of the righteous consists in the possession of "life everlasting," "an eternal weight of glory" (2 Cor. 4:17), an exemption from all sufferings for ever, a deliverance from all evils (2 Cor. 5:1, 2) and from the society of the wicked (2 Tim. 4:18), bliss without termination, the "fulness of joy" for ever (Luke 20:36; 2 Cor. 4:16, 18; 1 Pet. 1:4; 5:10; 1 John 3:2). The believer's heaven is not only a state of everlasting blessedness, but also a "place", a place "prepared" for them (John 14:2).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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Idioms and Phrases with heaven
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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