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From the Latin tripūs and its etymon the Ancient Greek τρίπους ‎(trípous); compare tripod. In the sense associated with Cambridge University, the Tripus is named after the three-legged stool on which he sat during the degree-awarding ceremony.



tripus ‎(plural tripodes)

  1. (obsolete, rare, in the historical of Cambridge University, capitalised when used as a title) A Bachelor of Arts appointed to make satirical strictures in humorous dispute with the candidates at a degree-awarding ceremony; tripos, prævaricator.
  2. (obsolete, rare, Greek and Roman antiquities) A vessel (usually a pot or cauldron) resting on three legs, often given as an ornament, a prize, or as an offering at a shrine to a god or oracle; often specifically, that such vessel upon which the priestess sat to deliver her oracles at the shrine to Apollo at Delphi; tripod.
  3. (zoology, in cypriniform fishes) The hindmost Weberian ossicle of the Weberian apparatus, touching the anterior wall of the swimbladder and connected by a dense, elongate ligament to the intercalarium.






From the Ancient Greek τρίπους ‎(trípous).



tripūs m ‎(genitive tripodis); third declension

  1. three-footed seat, tripod
    • 1531, Procopius Caesariensis, De rebus Gothorum, Persarum ac Vandalorum libri VII, page 262
      Tripus ferrea ante regiã ſemper ſtare ſolebat…
      An iron tripod always used to stand in front of the palace…
  2. Tripus (the tripod of the oracle at Delphi)
    • 1826, Br̮ge Thorlacius, Vas pictum Halico-graecum quod Orestem ad tripodem Delphicum supplicem exhibet, main title (Schultz)
      Vas pictum Halico-graecum quod Orestem ad tripodem Delphicum supplicem exhibet


Third declension.

Case Singular Plural
nominative tripūs tripodēs
genitive tripodis tripodum
dative tripodī tripodibus
accusative tripodem tripodēs
ablative tripode tripodibus
vocative tripūs tripodēs

Usage notes[edit]

  • In post-Classical Latin, tripūs is sometimes treated as feminine.