• Medusa
  • WordNet 3.6
    • n medusa one of two forms that coelenterates take: it is the free-swimming sexual phase in the life cycle of a coelenterate; in this phase it has a gelatinous umbrella-shaped body and tentacles
    • n Medusa (Greek mythology) a woman transformed into a Gorgon by Athena; she was slain by Perseus
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Medusa (Zoöl) Any free swimming acaleph; a jellyfish.
    • Medusa (Class. Myth) The Gorgon; or one of the Gorgons whose hair was changed into serpents, after which all who looked upon her were turned into stone.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n Medusa In Gr. mythology, one of the three Gorgons, the only one of them who was mortal. She was slain by Perseus, with the aid of Athena; and her serpent-entwined head was so awful that its sight turned all beholders to stone. It was afterward borne by Athena on her ægis or on her shield. The later artists beautified the grimacing head of Medusa, retaining only the writhing serpents of the legend. See Gorgon and ægis.
    • n Medusa Pl. medusæ (-sē). In zoology: [lowercase] A jelly-fish, sea-jelly, or sea-nettle; an acaleph, in a strict sense; a discophoran or discophorous hydrozoan; any member of the family Medusidæ or order or subclass Discophora: a term very loosely used, and now chiefly as an English word. See medusoid, n.
    • n Medusa [capitalized] [NL.] An old genus of jelly-fishes, used with great and varying latitude, more or less nearly equivalent to the order Discophora or family Medusidæ, now greatly restricted or entirely discarded. In the latter case Aurelia is used instead. See cut under acaleph. [In this sense there is no plural.]
    • n Medusa [lowercase] Some hydrozoan resembling or supposed to be one of the foregoing; a medusoid: as, the naked-eyed medusæ of Forbes, which are the reproductive zoöids or gonophores of gymnoblastic hydroids.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Medusa me-dū′sa one of the three Gorgons, whose head, cut off by Perseus, and placed in the ægis of Minerva, had the power of turning those who looked on it into stone: the name given to the common kinds of jelly-fishes, prob. from the likeness of their tentacles to the snakes on Medusa's head
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L., fr. Gr.
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Gr., 'ruler,' fem.


In literature:

Like a cameo in chalk her features were set and the writhing flames in her hair called up an image of Medusa.
"Louisiana Lou" by William West Winter
But this Medusa face!
"Valley of Wild Horses" by Zane Grey
The long wavy spines resemble the wavy locks of Medusa, hence the name.
"The Mushroom, Edible and Otherwise" by M. E. Hard
Beautiful as she was, she might have been the head of the Medusa, for Dr. Brunton felt suddenly as if turned to stone.
"Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science Volume 15, No. 89, May, 1875" by Various
While the period of Thule is 8.8 years, the period of Medusa is 3.1 years.
"Essays: Scientific, Political, & Speculative, Vol. I" by Herbert Spencer
He considered it quite equal to anything Medusa could do.
"Shirley" by Charlotte Brontë
In the last three stories, physical pain exposes its hideous countenance like that of Medusa mutilated.
"The Forerunners" by Romain Rolland
Her face had risen upon him from the back of the chair, and was staring upon him like that of a Medusa.
"Hand and Ring" by Anna Katharine Green
Still she was beautiful, but with the beauty of a Medusa.
"The Red Symbol" by John Ironside
Conspicuous among other varieties one sees the blue medusa, twelve inches and more in diameter.
"The Pearl of India" by Maturin M. Ballou
Chaos ... Medusa ... and the organizing principle!
"Diplomatic Immunity" by Robert Sheckley
At last her eyes rested upon a snake-encircled Medusa's head directly opposite and a scream of horror escaped her lips.
"A Struggle for Rome, v. 1" by Felix Dahn
The nights are no longer like summer, and the moon is Medusa.
"Anne" by Constance Fenimore Woolson
The Medusa remains in this stage of development for a long time.
"The Romance of Natural History, Second Series" by Philip Henry Gosse
Have you seen the head of Medusa?
"Villa Eden:" by Berthold Auerbach
There are no more beautiful phosphorescent animals in the sea than the Medusae.
"The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 16, No. 98, December, 1865" by Various
Wherever he might turn, this Medusa grinned at him.
"Klytia" by George Taylor
Marguerite allowed her mother for a moment to contemplate this picture, which affected her like the head of Medusa.
"Marguerite de Valois" by Alexandre Dumas
Here was a soldier who could vanquish the Medusa mother of Hoshiko by the cold process of words.
"The Way of the Gods" by John Luther Long
Besides these there was an abundance of rose-colored medusa.
"Under the Southern Cross" by Maturin M. Ballou

In poetry:

Oh, this Medusa-pleasure with her stings!
This essence of all suffering, which is joy!
I am not thankless for the spell it brings,
Though tears must be told down for the charmed toy.
"After-Strain" by Francis Thompson
Shall we "stand at ease," and not rush to the fray,
While the blood of the weak is tramped in the clay?
While the slimy "Medusa" of heinous crime
Is singing her deeds in perfidious rhyme?
"Hail to Lochiel And Lovat" by Angus Cameron Robertson
On hills like tumuli, and waters mute,
A whiteness steals as of a world made still
When reptant Death at last rears absolute—
An earth now frozen by malefice of eyes
Aeonian dooms and realm-deep rigors fill—
The gaze of that Medusa of the skies.
"The Medusa Of The Skies" by Clark Ashton Smith

In news:

The ultimate muscle car named Medusa.
Osmocote ® Presents: Capsicum annuum 'Medusa'.
The company says that the device, called MEDUSA (for "mob excess deterrent using silent audio"), could be used for crowd control .
"Bellflower" features a homemade flame- thrower, a muscle car christened Medusa and an unsavory hankering for the apocalypse as envisioned by the "Mad Max" flicks of the 1980s.
Medusa 's Gaze and Vampire's Bite.
A Medusa 's Head of Wires Soon Follows.
MURS, Dumbfoundead, & Medusa Discuss Freestyling Mecca Project Blowed and Why Hip Hop Lacks Female MC's.
Like medusa looked at it.
Medusa on the Beach by Marty Ross.
Medusa Jones by Ross Collins.
I decided to be Medusa for Halloween this year.
Sisters Whiskers and Medusa .
"The Medusae," by Henry Bigelow, 1909 — Bigelow was the founding director of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts, a world leader in ocean science.
"Given that the film is shot in Rome, and partly in Italian, we could not come out months later," says Medusa topper Giampaolo Letta.
Sonic Medusa plays bracing, guitar-fueled rock 'n' roll with less fat than a wrestler who just made weight.

In science:

During the day, the exposures of bias, flats and comparison lamps for the wavelength calibration have been done in the same setup and with the two separate sets of MEDUSA fibers.
Formation and Evolution of Dwarf Elliptical Galaxies