What does caduceus mean?

Definitions for caduceuskəˈdu si əs, -syus, -ʃəs, -ˈdyu-; -siˌaɪ

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

Princeton's WordNet

  1. caduceus(noun)

    an insignia used by the medical profession; modeled after the staff of Hermes


  1. caduceus(Noun)

    The official wand carried by a herald in ancient Greece and Rome, specifically the one carried in mythology by Hermes, the messenger of the gods, usually represented with two snakes twined around it.

  2. caduceus(Noun)

    A symbol () representing a staff with two snakes wrapped around it, used to indicate merchants and messengers, and also sometimes as a symbol of medicine.

  3. Origin: Via caduceus, caduceum, adaptation of Doric καρύκειον. This and Attic Greek κηρύκειον are derived from κῆρυξ. Related to κηρύσσω.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Caduceus(noun)

    the official staff or wand of Hermes or Mercury, the messenger of the gods. It was originally said to be a herald's staff of olive wood, but was afterwards fabled to have two serpents coiled about it, and two wings at the top

  2. Origin: [L. caduceum, caduceus; akin to Gr. a herald's wand, fr. herald.]


  1. Caduceus

    The caduceus is the staff carried by Hermes in Greek mythology. The same staff was also borne by heralds in general, for example by Iris, the messenger of Hera. It is a short staff entwined by two serpents, sometimes surmounted by wings. In Roman iconography it was often depicted being carried in the left hand of Mercury, the messenger of the gods, guide of the dead and protector of merchants, shepherds, gamblers, liars, and thieves. As a symbolic object it represents Hermes, and by extension trades, occupations or undertakings associated with the god. In later Antiquity the caduceus provided the basis for the astrological symbol representing the planet Mercury. Thus, through its use in astrology and alchemy, it has come to denote the elemental metal of the same name. By extension of its association with Mercury and Hermes, the caduceus is also a recognized symbol of commerce and negotiation, two realms in which balanced exchange and reciprocity are recognized as ideals. This association is ancient, and consistent from the Classical period to modern times. The caduceus is also used as a symbol representing printing, again by extension of the attributes of Mercury.

The Nuttall Encyclopedia

  1. Caduceus

    the winged rod of Hermes, entwined with two serpents; originally a simple olive branch; was in the hands of the god possessed of magical virtues; it was the symbol of peace.

Suggested Resources

  1. caduceus

    The caduceus symbol -- In this Symbols.com article you will learn about the meaning of the caduceus symbol and its characteristic.


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of caduceus in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of caduceus in Pythagorean Numerology is: 5

Images & Illustrations of caduceus

  1. caduceuscaduceuscaduceus

Translations for caduceus

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"caduceus." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2018. Web. 22 Mar. 2018. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/caduceus>.

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