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(often initial capital letter) the star that is the central body of the solar system, around which the planets revolve and from which they receive light and heat: its mean distance from the earth is about 93 million miles (150 million km), its diameter about 864,000 miles (1.4 million km), and its mass about 330,000 times that of the earth; its period of surface rotation is about 26 days at its equator but longer at higher latitudes.
the sun considered with reference to its position in the sky, its visibility, the season of the year, the time at which or the place where it is seen, etc.
a self-luminous heavenly body; star.
sunshine; the heat and light from the sun:
to be exposed to the sun.
a figure or representation of the sun, as a heraldic bearing usually surrounded with rays and marked with the features of a human face.
something likened to the sun in brightness, splendor, etc.
Chiefly Literary.

clime; climate.
glory; splendor.

sunrise or sunset:
They traveled hard from sun to sun.

a day.
a year.

to expose to the sun’s rays.
to warm, dry, etc., in the sunshine.
to put, bring, make, etc., by exposure to the sun.
to be exposed to the rays of the sun:
to sun in the yard.
against the sun, Nautical. counterclockwise.
place in the sun, a favorable or advantageous position; prominence; recognition:
The new generation of writers has achieved a place in the sun.
under the sun, on earth; anywhere:
the most beautiful city under the sun.
with the sun, Nautical. clockwise.
Contemporary Examples

With the sun entering Libra, squaring Pluto, you are being asked to take a stand for something, gosh-darn-it.
The Stars Predict Your Week Starsky + Cox September 17, 2011

Given this history of hoaxes, The sun would have been very cautious about accepting the Hussein photos in 2005.
Did News Corp. Illegally Purchase Saddam Hussein Photos from U.S. Officials? Peter Jukes November 18, 2012

But it may have been Mission Impossible, for the Early Show has tried every format under the sun.
Behind CBS’ Morning Show Shakeup Howard Kurtz November 29, 2010

The sun was setting, and he pointed to a cobweb glistening in a ray of light.
Raped by a Teacher: One Woman’s Tragic Past at the Horace Mann School Abigail Pesta September 18, 2012

The sun releases its hold on Jupiter, which can make you feel like there is suddenly nobody at the cosmic wheel.
The Stars Predict Your Week Starsky + Cox September 9, 2011

Historical Examples

He’s gone outside with Lise to see the sun set over Paris, I think.
The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete Emile Zola

We always think the sun drops down away from us, but it stays still.
The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson

We gave her a good run, although it was not altogether in the sun.
A Jolly Fellowship Frank R. Stockton

“I ordered the sun turned on at just this point,” replied her husband, with a large air.
The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson

A cloud passes across the sun and instantly everything is cooled.
In Africa John T. McCutcheon

the star at the centre of our solar system. It is a gaseous body having a highly compressed core, in which energy is generated by thermonuclear reactions (at about 15 million kelvins), surrounded by less dense radiative and convective zones serving to transport the energy to the surface (the photosphere). The atmospheric layers (the chromosphere and corona) are normally invisible except during a total eclipse. Mass and diameter: 333 000 and 109 times that of earth respectively; mean distance from earth: 149.6 million km (1 astronomical unit) related adjective solar
any star around which a planetary system revolves
the sun as it appears at a particular time or place: the winter sun
the radiant energy, esp heat and light, received from the sun; sunshine
a person or thing considered as a source of radiant warmth, glory, etc
a pictorial representation of the sun, often depicted with a human face
(poetic) a year or a day
(poetic) a climate
(archaic) sunrise or sunset (esp in the phrase from sun to sun)
catch the sun, to become slightly sunburnt
place in the sun, a prominent or favourable position
(nautical) shoot the sun, take the sun, to measure the altitude of the sun in order to determine latitude
touch of the sun, slight sunstroke
under the sun, beneath the sun, on earth; at all: nobody under the sun eats more than you do
verb suns, sunning, sunned
to expose (oneself) to the sunshine
(transitive) to expose to the sunshine in order to warm, tan, etc

Old English sunne, from Proto-Germanic *sunnon (cf. Old Norse, Old Saxon, Old High German sunna, Middle Dutch sonne, Dutch zon, German Sonne, Gothic sunno), from PIE *s(u)wen- (cf. Avestan xueng “sun,” Old Irish fur-sunnud “lighting up”), alternative form of root *saewel- “to shine, sun” (see Sol).

Old English sunne was fem., and the fem. pronoun was used until 16c.; since then masc. has prevailed. The empire on which the sun never sets (1630) originally was the Spanish, later the British. To have one’s place in the sun (1680s) is from Pascal’s “Pensées”; the German imperial foreign policy sense (1897) is from a speech by von Bülow.

1510s, “to set something in the sun,” from sun (n.). Meaning “to expose oneself to the sun” is recorded from c.1600. Sun-bathing is attested from c.1600.

Often Sun. A medium-sized, main-sequence star located in a spiral arm of the Milky Way galaxy, orbited by all of the planets and other bodies in our solar system and supplying the heat and light that sustain life on Earth. Its diameter is approximately 1.4 million km (868,000 mi), and its mass, about 330,000 times that of Earth, comprises more than 99 percent of the matter in the solar system. It has a temperature of some 16 million degrees C (27 million degrees F) at its core, where nuclear fusion produces tremendous amounts of energy, mainly through the series of reactions known as the proton-proton chain. The energy generated in the core radiates through a radiation zone to an opaque convection zone, where it rises to the surface through convection currents of the Sun’s plasma. The Sun’s surface temperature (at its photosphere) is approximately 6,200 degrees C (11,200 degrees F). Turbulent surface phenomena analogous to the Earth’s weather are prevalent, including magnetic storms, sunspots, and solar flares. The Sun was formed along with the rest of the solar system about 4.5 billion years ago and is expected to run out of its current hydrogen fuel in another 5 billion years, at which point it will develop into a red giant and ultimately into a white dwarf. See Table at solar system. See Note at dwarf star.

The star around which the Earth revolves.

Note: The sun is about 4.5 billion years old and is expected to remain in its present state for approximately another six billion years; it will eventually evolve into a white dwarf.

Related Terms

stick it

Sun Microsystems

(Heb. shemesh), first mentioned along with the moon as the two great luminaries of heaven (Gen. 1:14-18). By their motions and influence they were intended to mark and divide times and seasons. The worship of the sun was one of the oldest forms of false religion (Job 31:26,27), and was common among the Egyptians and Chaldeans and other pagan nations. The Jews were warned against this form of idolatry (Deut. 4:19; 17:3; comp. 2 Kings 23:11; Jer. 19:13).

In addition to the idiom beginning with
also see:

everything but the kitchen sink (under the sun)
make hay while the sun shines
nothing new under the sun
place in the sun


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