Heavens



[hev-uh n] /ˈhɛv ən/

noun
1.
the abode of God, the angels, and the spirits of the righteous after death; the place or state of existence of the blessed after the mortal life.
2.
(initial capital letter). Often, Heavens. the celestial powers; God.
3.
a metonym for God:
May heaven help us!
4.
heavens, (used with a singular verb) a wooden roof or canopy over the outer stage of an Elizabethan theater.
5.
Usually, heavens. the sky, firmament, or expanse of space surrounding the earth.
6.
a place or state of supreme happiness:
She made his life a heaven on earth.
interjection
7.
heavens, (used to express emphasis, surprise, etc.): For heaven’s sake!
Good heavens!
Idioms
8.
move heaven and earth, to do one’s utmost to effect an end; make a supreme effort:
She promised to move heaven and earth to be there for our wedding anniversary.
/ˈhɛvən/
noun
1.
(sometimes capital) (Christianity)

2.
(usually pl) the sky, firmament or space surrounding the earth
3.
(in any of various mythologies) a place, such as Elysium or Valhalla, to which those who have died in the gods’ favour are brought to dwell in happiness
4.
a place or state of joy and happiness
5.
(sing) or plural; sometimes capital. God or the gods, used in exclamatory phrases of surprise, exasperation, etc: for heaven’s sake, heavens above
6.
in seventh heaven, ecstatically happy
7.
move heaven and earth, to do everything possible (to achieve something)
n.

“realm of the heavenly bodies,” 1670s, from heaven.
n.

Old English heofon “home of God,” earlier “sky, firmament,” probably from Proto-Germanic *hibin-, dissimilated from *himin- (cf. Low German heben, Old Norse himinn, Gothic himins, Old Frisian himul, Dutch hemel, German Himmel “heaven, sky”), perhaps from PIE root *kem-/*kam- “to cover” (cf. chemise). [Watkins derives it elaborately from PIE *ak- “sharp” via *akman- “stone, sharp stone,” then “stony vault of heaven”].

Plural use in sense of “sky” is probably from Ptolemaic theory of space composed of many spheres, but it also formerly was used in the same sense as the singular in Biblical language, as a translation of Hebrew plural shamayim. Heaven-sent (adj.) attested from 1640s.
heaven (or heavens)

The dwelling place of God, the angels, and the souls of those who have gained salvation; a place of the greatest peace and beauty. (Compare hell.)

Related Terms

blue heaven, hog heaven, stink to high heaven, to hell

(1.) Definitions. The phrase “heaven and earth” is used to indicate the whole universe (Gen. 1:1; Jer. 23:24; Acts 17:24). According to the Jewish notion there were three heavens, (a) The firmament, as “fowls of the heaven” (Gen. 2:19; 7:3, 23; Ps. 8:8, etc.), “the eagles of heaven” (Lam. 4:19), etc. (b) The starry heavens (Deut. 17:3; Jer. 8:2; Matt. 24:29). (c) “The heaven of heavens,” or “the third heaven” (Deut. 10:14; 1 Kings 8:27; Ps. 115:16; 148:4; 2 Cor. 12:2). (2.) Meaning of words in the original, (a) The usual Hebrew word for “heavens” is _shamayim_, a plural form meaning “heights,” “elevations” (Gen. 1:1; 2:1). (b) The Hebrew word _marom_ is also used (Ps. 68:18; 93:4; 102:19, etc.) as equivalent to _shamayim_, “high places,” “heights.” (c) Heb. galgal, literally a “wheel,” is rendered “heaven” in Ps. 77:18 (R.V., “whirlwind”). (d) Heb. shahak, rendered “sky” (Deut. 33:26; Job 37:18; Ps. 18:11), plural “clouds” (Job 35:5; 36:28; Ps. 68:34, marg. “heavens”), means probably the firmament. (e) Heb. rakia is closely connected with (d), and is rendered “firmamentum” in the Vulgate, whence our “firmament” (Gen. 1:6; Deut. 33:26, etc.), regarded as a solid expanse. (3.) Metaphorical meaning of term. Isa. 14:13, 14; “doors of heaven” (Ps. 78:23); heaven “shut” (1 Kings 8:35); “opened” (Ezek. 1:1). (See 1 Chr. 21:16.) (4.) Spiritual meaning. The place of the everlasting blessedness of the righteous; the abode of departed spirits. (a) Christ calls it his “Father’s house” (John 14:2). (b) It is called “paradise” (Luke 23:43; 2 Cor. 12:4; Rev. 2:7). (c) “The heavenly Jerusalem” (Gal. 4: 26; Heb. 12:22; Rev. 3:12). (d) The “kingdom of heaven” (Matt. 25:1; James 2:5). (e) The “eternal kingdom” (2 Pet. 1:11). (f) The “eternal inheritance” (1 Pet. 1:4; Heb. 9:15). (g) The “better country” (Heb. 11:14, 16). (h) The blessed are said to “sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob,” and to be “in Abraham’s bosom” (Luke 16:22; Matt. 8:11); to “reign with Christ” (2 Tim. 2:12); and to enjoy “rest” (Heb. 4:10, 11). In heaven the blessedness of the righteous consists in the possession of “life everlasting,” “an eternal weight of glory” (2 Cor. 4:17), an exemption from all sufferings for ever, a deliverance from all evils (2 Cor. 5:1, 2) and from the society of the wicked (2 Tim. 4:18), bliss without termination, the “fulness of joy” for ever (Luke 20:36; 2 Cor. 4:16, 18; 1 Pet. 1:4; 5:10; 1 John 3:2). The believer’s heaven is not only a state of everlasting blessedness, but also a “place”, a place “prepared” for them (John 14:2).

In addition to the idioms beginning with heaven
heaven knows

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    [hev-uh n-sent] /ˈhɛv ənˌsɛnt/ adjective 1. providentially opportune: A heaven-sent rain revived the crops. adjective 1. providential; fortunate: a heaven-sent opportunity

  • Heavenward

    [hev-uh n-werd] /ˈhɛv ən wərd/ adverb 1. Also, heavenwards. toward heaven. adjective 2. directed toward heaven: heavenward prayer. /ˈhɛvənwəd/ adjective 1. directed towards heaven or the sky adverb 2. a variant of heavenwards



  • Heavenwards

    [hev-uh n-werd] /ˈhɛv ən wərd/ adverb 1. Also, heavenwards. toward heaven. adjective 2. directed toward heaven: heavenward prayer. /ˈhɛvənwədz/ adverb 1. towards heaven or the sky /ˈhɛvənwəd/ adjective 1. directed towards heaven or the sky adverb 2. a variant of heavenwards

  • Heave-off hinge

    [heev-awf, -of] /ˈhivˌɔf, -ˌɒf/ noun 1. .



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