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Evelyn De Morgan, The Dryad, 1884-1885


From Old French driade (wood nymph), from Latin Dryas, Dryadis, from Ancient Greek Δρυάς (Druás, dryad), from δρῦς (drûs, oak), from Proto-Indo-European *derew(o)- (tree, wood); cf. Proto-Indo-European *dóru (tree).


  • IPA(key): /ˈdɹaɪəd/, /ˈdɹaɪæd/


dryad (plural dryads)

  1. (Greek mythology) In Greek myth, a female tree spirit.
    Coordinate term: Meliai
    Hyponyms: Daphne, hamadryad
    • 1914, Hans Christian Andersen, “The Dryad”, in William Alexander Craigie, transl., Fairy tales and other stories:
      There it had stood for years, close beside a mighty oak, under which sat often the kindly old priest, who told stories to the listening children. The young chestnut tree listened with them: the Dryad inside it, who was still a child, could remember the time when the tree was so small that it only reached a little higher than the ferns and long blades of grass.


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