comet

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See also: Comet

English[edit]

The comet Hale–Bopp in the night sky.

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English comete, partly from Old English comēta and partly from Old French comete, both from Latin comētēs, from Ancient Greek κομήτης (komḗtēs, longhaired), short for ἀστὴρ κομήτης ([astēr] komētēs, "longhaired [star])" and referring to the tail of a comet, from κόμη (kómē, hair). Compare English faxed star.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • enPR: kŏm'ət, IPA(key): /ˈkɒmət/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɒmɪt

Noun[edit]

comet (plural comets)

  1. (astronomy) A small Solar System body consisting mainly of volatile ice, dust and particles of rock whose very eccentric solar orbit periodically brings it close enough to the Sun that the ice vaporises to form an atmosphere, or coma, which may be blown by the solar wind to produce a visible tail.
    • 1905, [Edward Plunkett,] Lord Dunsany, The Gods of Pegāna[1], London: Elkin Mathews, [], →OCLC:
      And They made by the lifting of Their hands, each god according to his sign, the Bright One with the flaring tail to seek from the end of the Worlds to the end of them again, to return again after a hundred years. Man, when thou seest the comet, know that another seeketh besides thee nor ever findeth out.
  2. A celestial phenomenon with the appearance of such a body.
  3. Any of several species of hummingbird found in the Andes.

Usage notes[edit]

A comet whose volatile ices have completely evaporated is said to be dead or extinct.

Synonyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Descendants[edit]

  • Malay: komet
  • Urdu: ⁧کومٹ(komeṭ)
  • Welsh: comed

Translations[edit]

Further reading[edit]

Anagrams[edit]

Catalan[edit]

Verb[edit]

comet

  1. inflection of cometre:
    1. third-person singular present indicative
    2. second-person singular imperative

Latin[edit]

Verb[edit]

cōmet

  1. third-person singular future active indicative of cōmō

Romanian[edit]

Noun[edit]

comet n (plural comete)

  1. Alternative form of cometă

Declension[edit]