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[thoh-nee-uh n] /ˈθoʊ ni ən/

adjective, Classical Mythology.
of or relating to the deities, spirits, and other beings dwelling under the earth.
of or relating to the underworld

1882, with suffix -ic, from Greek khthonios “of the earth, in the earth,” from khthon “the earth, solid surface of the earth” (mostly poetic) from PIE root *dhghem- (cf. Greek khamai “on the ground,” first element in chameleon; also Latin humus “earth, soil,” humilis “low;” Lithuanian žeme, Old Church Slavonic zemlja “earth;” Sanskrit ksam- “earth” (opposed to “sky”); Old Irish du, genitive don “place,” earlier “earth”).

1804, from Latinized form of Greek khthonios (see chthonic) + -an.


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