Definition of antediluvian in English:


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  • 1Of or belonging to the time before the biblical Flood.

    ‘gigantic bones of antediluvian animals’
    • ‘In addition, the parallels between the Sumerian and biblical antediluvian data open up the possibility of establishing chronological correlations between the rest of the Kings List and the book of Genesis.’
    • ‘An antediluvian civilization, thriving and technologically advanced prior to the flood, managed to survive the flood due to their technological prowess.’
    • ‘One even tells its followers that they may relive former lives, back into antediluvian periods.’
    • ‘Despite the Jessica accident, tourists still flock to the Galapagos, tempted by a once-in-a-lifetime chance to return the antediluvian stare of a giant tortoise or turn cartwheels with playful sea lions in an underwater ballet.’
    • ‘Maybe these antediluvian creatures were having a good old natter about the ammonite down the road and then WHAM they got fossilised?’
    • ‘You are made to feel like an antediluvian creature or a downright atheist!’
    • ‘The antediluvian myth is one where it is suggested that the ancients lived exceptionally long lives.’
    • ‘Birds did not evolve from massive sauropods or antediluvian, tanklike ankylosaurs or even from the large tyrannosaurs (which do, in fact, branch fairly close to birds on the dinosaur bush).’
    • ‘Freeman organises his almost overwhelmingly rich subject into thematic chapters, of which the most absorbing discuss the way such artists as John Martin portrayed the antediluvian world as a place of catastrophe or competition.’
    • ‘Now, as we drive into the Age of Dinosaurs, we have another choice: we can head north, into Queensland where a few dinosaurs have been found in an antediluvian inland sea and a huge series of river deltas that emptied into it.’
    • ‘The Cardiff giant is a fake fossil of an antediluvian giant some ten feet high with 21 inch feet.’
    before the flood, prehistoric, primeval, primordial, primal, earliest, ancient, early
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    1. 1.1mainly humorous Ridiculously old-fashioned.
      ‘they maintain antediluvian sex-role stereotypes’
      • ‘In the new dispensation, religion is being hemmed into a narrow, private world, as if a public commitment to certain beliefs is old-fashioned and antediluvian, like wearing your shirt inside your drawers.’
      • ‘But I cannot see the House of Lords' decision as some sort of cataclysm which has put a quarter of a century's family jurisprudence into antediluvian obsolescence.’
      • ‘‘The newspaper industry prices itself in a way that is at best archaic and at worst antediluvian,’ he says.’
      • ‘A remnant of the decade that fashion forgot, these antediluvian monstrosities have emerged, gasping in to the 21st Century.’
      • ‘Flash forward two decades and the documentary section had become a sleepy backwater, with an antediluvian selection committee seemingly oblivious to new currents in documentary film.’
      • ‘If the Fire Brigades Union had more deft leadership, it might have found a way to secure something approaching its pay demand by offering to negotiate its antediluvian work practices.’
      • ‘Why should Wisconsin women be expected to revere his anti-woman, antediluvian teachings?’
      • ‘I bought it from Alan Austin's shop, which was not a shop but a basement with occasional opening hours, in those antediluvian days of 1975 when there were no comic shops, somewhere in South London.’
      • ‘The ability to touch-type is greatly overrated unless you are the secretary - sorry, PA - to some antediluvian boss who still wants to dictate letters.’
      • ‘Such methods are, of course, antediluvian now.’
      • ‘Take a look in the playhouses of some Scottish towns and you can still find the sort of antediluvian performances which used to struggle to get on the bill at Butlins in the 50s.’
      • ‘That sounds positively antediluvian now, doesn't it?’
      • ‘Officials at headquarters either forgot about it, or could not store the information in a useful place because of an antediluvian computer system.’
      • ‘Part of this is a reflection of inadequate staffing, poor management, and an antediluvian records system; some is a question of attitude, especially among inexperienced, simply ignorant, or poorly led secondary care teams.’
      • ‘Still, the two gurus were making the same point: In no time, today's Net will be an antediluvian relic, replaced by an unimaginably advanced network that controls all communication everywhere.’
      • ‘The other almost always requires a delicate dance through a minefield of potential libel, antediluvian prejudice, and post-publication recriminations.’
      out of date, outdated, outmoded, old-fashioned, ancient, antiquated, archaic, antique, superannuated, anachronistic, outworn, behind the times, primitive, medieval, quaint, old-fangled, obsolescent, obsolete, prehistoric
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/ˌan(t)ēdəˈlo͞ovēən/ /ˌæn(t)idəˈluviən/ /ˌan(t)ədīˈlo͞ovēən/ /ˌæn(t)ədaɪˈluviən/


Mid 17th century from ante- + Latin diluvium ‘deluge’+ -an.