noun, plural elves
[elvz] /ɛlvz/ (Show IPA)
(in folklore) one of a class of preternatural beings, especially from mountainous regions, with magical powers, given to capricious and often mischievous interference in human affairs, and usually imagined to be a diminutive being in human form; sprite; fairy.
a diminutive person, especially a child.
a mischievous person, especially a child.
noun (pl) elves (ɛlvz)
(in folklore) one of a kind of legendary beings, usually characterized as small, manlike, and mischievous
a mischievous or whimsical child
extremely low frequency
“one of a race of powerful supernatural beings in Germanic folklore,” Old English elf (Mercian, Kentish), ælf (Northumbrian), ylfe (plural, West Saxon), from Proto-Germanic *albiz (cf. Old Saxon alf, Old Norse alfr, German alp “evil spirit, goblin, incubus”), origin unknown, possibly from PIE *albho- “white.” Used figuratively for “mischievous person” from 1550s.
In addition to elf/ælf (masc.), Old English had parallel form *elfen (fem.), the plural of which was *elfenna, -elfen, from Proto-Germanic *albinjo-. Both words survived into Middle English and were active there, the former as elf (with the vowel of the plural), plural elves, the latter as elven, West Midlands dialect alven (plural elvene).
The Germanic elf originally was dwarfish and malicious (cf. Old English ælfadl “nightmare,” ælfsogoða “hiccup,” thought to be caused by elves); in the Middle Ages they were confused to some degree with faeries; the more noble version begins with Spenser. Nonetheless a popular component in Anglo-Saxon names, many of which survive as modern given names and surnames, cf. Ælfræd “Elf-counsel” (Alfred), Ælfwine “Elf-friend” (Alvin), Ælfric “Elf-ruler” (Eldridge), also women’s names such as Ælfflæd “Elf-beauty.” Elf Lock hair tangled, especially by Queen Mab, “which it was not fortunate to disentangle” [according to Robert Nares’ glossary of Shakespeare] is from 1592.
Binary format used by System V Release 4 Unix.
extremely low frequency
[el fahy-yoom, fey-] /ˌɛl faɪˈyum, feɪ-/ noun 1. (def 2). /ɛl faɪˈjuːm/ noun 1. a city in N Egypt: a site of towns going back at least to the 12th dynasty. Pop: 311 000 (2005 est)
[el fash-er] /ɛl ˈfæʃ ər/ noun 1. a city in W Sudan. [dahr-foo r] /dɑrˈfʊər/ noun 1. a province in the W Sudan. 191,650 sq. mi. (496,374 sq. km). Capital: El Fasher. /dɑːˈfʊə/ noun 1. a region of the W Sudan; an independent kingdom until conquered by Egypt in 1874; since 2003 conflict between the […]
[el fahy-yoom, fey-] /ˌɛl faɪˈyum, feɪ-/ noun 1. (def 2). [fahy-yoom] /faɪˈyum/ noun 1. a province in N central Egypt: many archaeological remains. 691 sq. mi. (1790 sq. km). 2. Also called El Faiyum, El Fayum. a city in and the capital of this province, SW of Cairo. adjective 3. pertaining to or designating a […]
noun 1. any of various cup-shaped ascomycetous fungi of the order Pezizales, often strikingly coloured, such as the orange-peel elf-cup (Aleuria aurantia), which is bright orange inside and dirty white outside, and the scarlet elf-cup (Sarcoscypha coccinea)