See under (def 6a).
[lab-uh-rinth] /ˈlæb ə rɪnθ/
an intricate combination of paths or passages in which it is difficult to find one’s way or to reach the exit.
Synonyms: maze, network, web.
a maze of paths bordered by high hedges, as in a park or garden, for the amusement of those who search for a way out.
a complicated or tortuous arrangement, as of streets or buildings.
Synonyms: warren, maze, jungle, snarl, tangle, knot.
any confusingly intricate state of things or events; a bewildering complex: His papers were lost in an hellish bureaucratic labyrinth.
After the death of her daughter, she wandered in a labyrinth of sorrow for what seemed like a decade.
Synonyms: wilderness, jungle, forest; morass.
(initial capital letter) Classical Mythology. a vast maze built in Crete by Daedalus, at the command of King Minos, to house the Minotaur.
a mazelike pattern inlaid in the pavement of a church.
Also called acoustic labyrinth, acoustical labyrinth. Audio. a loudspeaker enclosure with air chambers at the rear for absorbing sound waves radiating in one direction so as to prevent their interference with waves radiated in another direction.
a mazelike network of tunnels, chambers, or paths, either natural or man-made Compare maze (sense 1)
any complex or confusing system of streets, passages, etc
a complex or intricate situation
(electronics) an enclosure behind a high-performance loudspeaker, consisting of a series of air chambers designed to absorb unwanted sound waves
(Greek myth) a huge maze constructed for King Minos in Crete by Daedalus to contain the Minotaur
c.1400, laberynthe (late 14c. in Latinate form laborintus) “labyrinth, maze,” figuratively “bewildering arguments,” from Latin labyrinthus, from Greek labyrinthos “maze, large building with intricate passages,” especially the structure built by Daedelus to hold the Minotaur near Knossos in Crete, from a pre-Greek language; perhaps related to Lydian labrys “double-edged axe,” symbol of royal power, which fits with the theory that the labyrinth was originally the royal Minoan palace on Crete and meant “palace of the double-axe.” Used in English for “maze” early 15c., and in figurative sense of “confusing state of affairs” (1540s).
labyrinth lab·y·rinth (lāb’ə-rĭnth’)
membranous labyrinth n.
The group of fluid-filled membranous sacs of the inner ear that are associated with the senses of hearing and balance.
The system of interconnecting canals and spaces that make up the inner ear of many vertebrates. The labyrinth has both a bony component, made up of the cochlea, the semicircular canals, and the vestibule, and a membranous one.
In classical mythology, a vast maze on the island of Crete. The great inventor Daedalus designed it, and the king of Crete kept the Minotaur in it. Very few people ever escaped from the Labyrinth. One was Theseus, the killer of the Minotaur.
Note: A labyrinth can be literally a maze or figuratively any highly intricate construction or problem.
- Membranous laryngitis
membranous laryngitis n. A form of laryngitis in which there is a pseudomembranous exudate on the vocal cords.
- Membranous ossification
membranous ossification n. The development of bone tissue within connective tissue.
- Membranous rhinitis
membranous rhinitis n. Chronic inflammation of the nasal mucous membrane accompanied by a fibrinous or pseudomembranous exudate. Also called fibrinous rhinitis.
membrum mem·brum (měm’brəm) n. pl. mem·bra (-brə) Member. Used in anatomy.