What does Ancient mean?

Definitions for Ancient
ˈeɪn ʃəntan·cient

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word Ancient.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. ancient, antediluviannoun

    a very old person

  2. ancientadjective

    a person who lived in ancient times

  3. ancientadjective

    belonging to times long past especially of the historical period before the fall of the Western Roman Empire

    "ancient history"; "ancient civilizations such as those of the Etruscans and Sumerians"; "ancient Greece"

  4. ancientadjective

    very old

    "an ancient mariner"


  1. ancientnoun

    A person who is very old or who lived in ancient times.

  2. ancientnoun

    A flag, banner, standard or ensign.

  3. ancientadjective

    Having lasted from a remote period; having been of long duration; of great age; very old.

  4. ancientadjective

    Existent or occurring in time long past, usually in remote ages; belonging to or associated with antiquity; old, as opposed to modern.

  5. Etymology: From auncyen, from ancien, from root *anteanus, from ante. Compare antique.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. ANCIENTadjective

    Etymology: ancien, Fr. antiquus, Lat.

    Ancient tenure is that whereby all the manours belonging to the crown, in St. Edward’s or William the Conquerour’s days, did hold. The number and names of which manours, as all others belonging to common persons, he caused to be written in a book, after a survey made of them, now remaining in the exchequer, and called doomsday book; and such as by that book appeared to have belonged to the crown at that time, are called ancient demesnes. John Cowell.

    With the ancient is wisdom, and in length of days understanding. Job, xii. 12.

    Thales affirms, that God comprehended all things, and that God was of all things the most ancient, because he never had any beginning. Walter Raleigh, History of the World.

    Gave the tall ancient forest too his axe. James Thomson, Summer.

    I see thy fury: if I longer stay,
    We shall begin our ancient bickerings. William Shakespeare, Henry VI.

  2. Ancientnoun

    Those that lived in old time were called ancients, opposed to the moderns.

    Etymology: from ancient, adj.

    And though the ancients thus their rules invade,
    As kings dispense with laws themselves have made;
    Moderns, beware! or if you must offend
    Against the precept, ne’er transgress its end. Alexander Pope, Ess. on Crit.

  3. Ancientnoun

    The flag or streamer of a ship, and, formerly, of a regiment.

  4. Ancientnoun

    The bearer of a flag, as was Ancient Pistol; whence in present use, ensign.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Ancientadjective

    old; that happened or existed in former times, usually at a great distance of time; belonging to times long past; specifically applied to the times before the fall of the Roman empire; -- opposed to modern; as, ancient authors, literature, history; ancient days

  2. Ancientadjective

    old; that has been of long duration; of long standing; of great age; as, an ancient forest; an ancient castle

  3. Ancientadjective

    known for a long time, or from early times; -- opposed to recent or new; as, the ancient continent

  4. Ancientadjective

    dignified, like an aged man; magisterial; venerable

  5. Ancientadjective

    experienced; versed

  6. Ancientadjective

    former; sometime

  7. Ancientnoun

    those who lived in former ages, as opposed to the moderns

  8. Ancientnoun

    an aged man; a patriarch. Hence: A governor; a ruler; a person of influence

  9. Ancientnoun

    a senior; an elder; a predecessor

  10. Ancientnoun

    one of the senior members of the Inns of Court or of Chancery

  11. Ancientnoun

    an ensign or flag

  12. Ancientnoun

    the bearer of a flag; an ensign

  13. Etymology: [Corrupted from ensign.]


  1. Ancient

    The Ancients are a humanoid race in the fictional Stargate universe. They are called "Ancients" in the Milky Way, but are also known as Lanteans or Ancestors in the Pegasus galaxy and as the Alterans in their home galaxy, and they sometimes call themselves Anquietas in their language. In the series mythology, they are one of the most advanced races known to have existed; they evolved millions of years before the present day and reached their level of technology long before humanity evolved on Earth. They are best known as the builders of the Stargates, the giant ring-shaped portals commonly used by Earth-based humans to travel and explore the Milky Way and Pegasus galaxies. The Ancients have become an important race in all three Stargate series. They belong to the same race as the Ori, the main antagonists in Stargate SG-1 since the show's ninth season, and have played a large role in the series' many story arcs. In Stargate Atlantis, the Ancients built Atlantis, the show's main setting, and are responsible for the emergence of the show's two main villain races: the Wraith and the Asurans. In Stargate Universe they are the ones that have built and launched the ship Destiny on its journey.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Ancient

    ān′shent, adj. old: belonging to former times, specifically, of times prior to the downfall of the western Roman empire (476 A.D.): of great age or duration: of past times in a general sense: venerable: antique, old-fashioned.—n. an aged man, a patriarch: a superior in age or dignity.—adv. An′ciently.—ns. An′cientness; An′cientry, ancientness, seniority: ancestry: dignity of birth: (Shak.) old people.—n.pl. An′cients, those who lived in remote times, esp. the Greeks and Romans of classical times: (B.) elders.—The Ancient of days, a title in the Holy Scriptures for the Almighty, applied by Byron to Athens. [Fr. ancien—Low L. antianus, old—L. ante, before. See Antique.]

  2. Ancient

    ān′shent, n. (obs.) a flag or its bearer: an ensign. [Corr. of Fr. enseigne. See Ensign.]

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. ancient

    A term formerly used for the colours and their bearer, as ensign is now. Shakspeare's Nym was only a corporal, but Pistol was an ancient.

Military Dictionary and Gazetteer

  1. ancient

    A term formerly used to express the grand ensign or standard of an army.

Suggested Resources

  1. ancient

    Song lyrics by ancient -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by ancient on the Lyrics.com website.

Etymology and Origins

  1. Ancient

    Iago is described as Othello’s “ancient.” Even in Shakespeare’s day this word was a corruption of ensign, or standard-bearer.

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Ancient' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #2009

  2. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Ancient' in Adjectives Frequency: #272

How to pronounce Ancient?

How to say Ancient in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of Ancient in Chaldean Numerology is: 6

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of Ancient in Pythagorean Numerology is: 3

Examples of Ancient in a Sentence

  1. Ashleigh Haruda:

    While some ancient older civilisations such as Egypt and Rome kept cats as pets, we don't know much about cats outside of those times and places, so this find is helping us fill in the picture that gives us a more complete picture about how people treated animals in the past.

  2. Adhi Agus Oktaviana:

    The hunters represented in the ancient rock art panel are simple figures with human-like bodies, but they have been depicted with heads or other body parts like those from birds, reptiles and other faunal species endemic to Sulawesi.

  3. Erez Ben-Yosef:

    We are going to continue and explore the regional connections of this kingdom, to see if we see any evidence for their connections with other kingdoms in the region, including Ancient Israel.

  4. Panayiotis Stefos:

    Joking aside, ancient CDs have never been found.

  5. Paul Graham:

    It can be interesting to study ancient philosophy, but more as a kind of accident report than to teach you anything useful.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for Ancient

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