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Charles atlas

Classical Mythology. a Titan, son of Iapetus and brother of Prometheus and Epimetheus, condemned to support the sky on his shoulders: identified by the ancients with the Atlas Mountains.
a person who supports a heavy burden; a mainstay.
Charles (Angelo Siciliano) 1894–1972, U.S. body-building advocate, born in Italy.
a liquid-propellant booster rocket, originally developed as the first U.S. ICBM, used with Agena or Centaur upper stages to launch satellites into orbit around the earth and send probes to the moon and planets; also used to launch the Mercury spacecraft into orbit around the earth.
Contemporary Examples

He looks like the before photo in one of those old charles atlas weight-training ads.
GOP Still Desperate for White Knight Despite Romney’s Michigan, Arizona Wins Michelle Cottle February 28, 2012

a collection of maps, usually in book form
a book of charts, graphs, etc, illustrating aspects of a subject: an anatomical atlas
(anatomy) the first cervical vertebra, attached to and supporting the skull in man Compare axis1
(architect) (pl) atlantes another name for telamon
a standard size of drawing paper, 26 × 17 inches
(Greek myth) a Titan compelled to support the sky on his shoulders as punishment for rebelling against Zeus
a US intercontinental ballistic missile, also used in launching spacecraft
(astronomy) a small satellite of Saturn, discovered in 1980

1580s, Titan, son of Iapetus and Clymene, supposed to uphold the pillars of heaven, which was his punishment for being the war leader of the Titans in the struggle with the Olympian gods. The name in Greek perhaps means “The Bearer (of the Heavens),” from a-, copulative prefix, + stem of tlenai “to bear,” from PIE root *tele- “to lift, support, weigh.” Mount Atlas, in Mauritania, was important in Greek cosmology as a support of the heavens.

“collection of maps in a volume,” 1636, first in reference to the English translation of “Atlas, sive cosmographicae meditationes de fabrica mundi” (1585) by Flemish geographer Gerhardus Mercator (1512-1594), who might have been the first to use this word in this way. A picture of the Titan Atlas holding up the world appeared on the frontispiece of this and other early map collections.

atlas at·las (āt’ləs)
The top or first cervical vertebra of the neck, supporting the skull and articulating with the occipital bone and rotating around the dens of the axis.

In classical mythology, a Titan famous for his strength. After the defeat of the Titans by Zeus, Atlas was condemned to support the Earth and sky on his shoulders for eternity.

Note: Since the sixteenth century, pictures of Atlas and his burden have been used as decorations on maps. Accordingly, the word atlas is used for a book of maps.

Note: An “Atlas” or “atlas” is an incredibly strong person or one who carries an enormous burden.

A bound collection of maps. Atlases are named after the Greek god Atlas.
[National Aeronautics and Space Administration] Atmospheric Laboratory for Applications and Science


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