|ivory (ˈaɪvərɪ, -vrɪ)|
|—n , pl -ries|
|1.||a. a hard smooth creamy white variety of dentine that makes up a major part of the tusks of elephants, walruses, and similar animals|
|b. (as modifier): ivory ornaments|
|2.||a tusk made of ivory|
|3.||a. a yellowish-white colour; cream|
|b. (as adjective): ivory shoes|
|4.||a substance resembling elephant tusk|
|5.||an ornament, etc, made of ivory|
|6.||obsolete black ivory Black slaves collectively|
|[C13: from Old French ivurie, from Latin evoreus made of ivory, from ebur ivory; related to Greek elephas ivory, |
"Et Vigny, plus secret, Comme en sa tour d'ivoire, avant midi rentrait." [Saine-Beuve, "Pensées d'Août, a M. Villemain," 1837]
|ivory (ī'və-rē) Pronunciation Key
The hard, smooth, yellowish-white substance forming the teeth and tusks of certain animals, such as the tusks of elephants and walruses and the teeth of certain whales. Ivory is composed of dentin.
(Heb. pl. shenhabbim, the "tusks of elephants") was early used in decorations by the Egyptians, and a great trade in it was carried on by the Assyrians (Ezek. 27:6; Rev. 18:12). It was used by the Phoenicians to ornament the box-wood rowing-benches of their galleys, and Hiram's skilled workmen made Solomon's throne of ivory (1 Kings 10:18). It was brought by the caravans of Dedan (Isa. 21:13), and from the East Indies by the navy of Tarshish (1 Kings 10:22). Many specimens of ancient Egyptian and Assyrian ivory-work have been preserved. The word _habbim_ is derived from the Sanscrit _ibhas_, meaning "elephant," preceded by the Hebrew article (ha); and hence it is argued that Ophir, from which it and the other articles mentioned in 1 Kings 10:22 were brought, was in India.