What does harpy mean?

Definitions for harpy
ˈhɑr piharpy

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word harpy.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. vixen, harpy, hellcatnoun

    a malicious woman with a fierce temper

  2. Harpynoun

    (Greek mythology) vicious winged monster; often depicted as a bird with the head of a woman

  3. harpy, harpy bat, tube-nosed bat, tube-nosed fruit batnoun

    any of various fruit bats of the genus Nyctimene distinguished by nostrils drawn out into diverging tubes

  4. harpy, harpy eagle, Harpia harpyjanoun

    large black-and-white crested eagle of tropical America


  1. harpynoun

    A fabulous winged monster, ravenous and filthy, having the face of a woman and the body of a vulture.

  2. harpynoun

    A shrewish woman

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Harpynoun

    The harpies were a kind of birds which had the faces of women, and foul long claws, very filthy creatures; which, when the table was furnished for Phineus, came flying in, and devouring or carrying away the greater part of the victuals, did so defile the rest that they could not be endured. Walter Raleigh

    Etymology: harpyia, Latin; harpie, harpye, French.

    That an harpy is not a centaur is by this way as much a truth, as that a square is not a circle. John Locke.

    I will do you any ambassage to the pigmies, rather than hold three words conference with this harpy. William Shakespeare.


  1. Harpy

    In Greek mythology and Roman mythology, a harpy (plural harpies, Ancient Greek: ἅρπυια, romanized: hárpyia, pronounced [hárpyːa]; Latin: harpȳia) is a half-human and half-bird personification of storm winds. They feature in Homeric poems.


  1. harpy

    A harpy is a mythical creature originating from Greek and Roman mythology, often depicted as a bird with a woman's face. Harpies are usually portrayed as agents of punishment who abducted people and tortured them on their way to Tartarus. They were known for their speed and sharp claws. In modern usage, the term "harpy" can also refer to a predatory or scolding, nagging woman.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Harpynoun

    a fabulous winged monster, ravenous and filthy, having the face of a woman and the body of a vulture, with long claws, and the face pale with hunger. Some writers mention two, others three

  2. Harpynoun

    one who is rapacious or ravenous; an extortioner

  3. Harpynoun

    the European moor buzzard or marsh harrier (Circus aeruginosus)

  4. Harpynoun

    a large and powerful, double-crested, short-winged American eagle (Thrasaetus harpyia). It ranges from Texas to Brazil

  5. Etymology: [F. harpie, L. harpyia, Gr. "a`rpyia, from the root of "arpa`zein to snatch, to seize. Cf. Rapacious.]


  1. Harpy

    In Greek mythology, a harpy was one of the winged spirits best known for constantly stealing all food from Phineus. The literal meaning of the word seems to be "that which snatches" as it comes from the Greek word harpazein, which means "to snatch". A harpy was the mother of the horses of Achilles sired by the West Wind Zephyros . Hesiod calls them two "lovely-haired" creatures, and pottery art depicting the harpies featured beautiful women with wings. Harpies as ugly winged bird-women, e.g. in Aeschylus' The Eumenides are a late development, due to a confusion with the Sirens. Roman and Byzantine writers detailed their ugliness.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Harpy

    här′pi, n. (myth.) a rapacious and filthy monster, with the body of a woman and the wings, feet, and claws of a bird of prey, considered as a minister of the vengeance of the gods: (her.) a vulture with the head and breast of a woman: a South American eagle, larger than the golden eagle, and of great strength and rapacity: a rapacious person. [L. harpyia—Gr., pl. harpyiai, 'snatchers,' symbols of the storm-wind—harpazein, to seize.]

Military Dictionary and Gazetteer

  1. harpy

    A fabulous creature in Greek mythology, considered as a minister of the vengeance of the gods. In heraldry it is represented as a vulture, with the head and breast of a woman.

How to pronounce harpy?

How to say harpy in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of harpy in Chaldean Numerology is: 8

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of harpy in Pythagorean Numerology is: 5

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for harpy

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

Get even more translations for harpy »


Find a translation for the harpy definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:


Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


"harpy." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 19 Jul 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/harpy>.

Discuss these harpy definitions with the community:


    Are we missing a good definition for harpy? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Image or illustration of


    Credit »

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Browse Definitions.net


    Are you a words master?

    the act of carrying something
    A interrupt
    B aggravate
    C carry
    D obligate

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for harpy: