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A sharp, narrow mountain ridge or spur.

[French, from Old French areste, fishbone, spine, from Late Latin arista, awn, fishbone, from Latin, awn.]


(əˈreɪt; əˈrɛt)
1. (Physical Geography) a sharp ridge separating two cirques or glacial valleys in mountainous regions
[C19: from French: fishbone, backbone (of a fish), ridge, sharp edge, from Latin arista ear of corn, fishbone]


(ˌɑr ɪˈteɪ)

the aggregate of qualities making up good character.
[1930–35; < Greek aretḗ]



a sharp rugged mountain ridge produced by glaciation.
[1860–65; < French; Old French areste sharp ridge < Latin arista awn, ear of wheat]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.arête - a sharp narrow ridge found in rugged mountainsarete - a sharp narrow ridge found in rugged mountains
ridgeline, ridge - a long narrow range of hills
References in periodicals archive ?
72) In an exceptional scene at the end of Book Two, Pan's aretai are manifest through an entire night and into the following day: he causes great commotion for the Methymnaean soldiers (Longus 2,25,3-26), and his instrument, the syrinx, rings out (Longus 2,26,3).
107: "If, as I believe, Socrates' position in the Protagoras is that all the specific aretai are one and the same in that different ways of behaving well all arise from the knowledge of what is good and bad [.