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 (kôr′ə-fē′əs, kŏr′-)
n. pl. cor·y·phae·i (-fē′ī′)
1. The leader of a Greek chorus.
2. A leader or spokesperson.

[Latin, leader, from Greek koruphaios, from koruphē, head; see ker- in Indo-European roots.]


(ˌkɒrɪˈfiːəs) or


n, pl -phaei (-ˈfiːaɪ)
1. (Theatre) (in ancient Greek drama) the leader of the chorus
2. archaic or literary a leader of a group
[C17: from Latin, from Greek koruphaios leader, from koruphē summit]


(ˌkɔr əˈfi əs, ˌkɒr-)

n., pl. -phae•i (-ˈfi aɪ)
1. the leader of the chorus in ancient Greek drama.
2. a spokesperson.
[1625–35; < Latin < Greek koryphaîos leading, derivative of koryph(ḗ) head, top]


- A Greek word meaning "chief," for the leader of a party, sect, school of thought, etc.
See also related terms for leader.
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References in classic literature ?
Bad flute-players twist and twirl, if they have to represent 'the quoit-throw,' or hustle the coryphaeus when they perform the 'Scylla.
1843, comments on this passage as follows: "That great patron and Coryphaeus of this tribe, Nicolo Machiavel, laid down this for a master rule in his political scheme: 'That the show of religion was helpful to the politician, but the reality of it hurtful and pernicious.
Just after, the coryphaeus criticize Polymestor's words, since it is not appropriate to generalize: "Do not presume Polymestor, whatever your provocation, to include all women in this sweeping curse without distinction" [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], Hecuba, vv.
Interestingly, though, the musical structure that the protagonist envisions for the work reflects his thoroughly classical training: a cantata introduced by the coryphaeus, joined by a melismatic, voice above the cantus firmus with various orchestral and choral entrances.
It can be likened to that of the coryphaeus, who as the leader of the chorus in ancient drama, "converses with the actors, offering advice, warning, encouragement, instruction, and sympathy, according to the relationship of the group to the individual character.
Quite different from Kassil"s situation as coryphaeus for the regime was that of the quasi-fairy-tale writer Pavel Bazhov (1879-1950).
This is not some sort of cultural panorama of fin de siecle America, with William James as Corybant or coryphaeus of a band of wild-eyed "modernists.
In this next scene the coryphaeus further undermines Odysseus's statu s as a war hero by deriding the war prize.
The visual databases were created by the researchers using Designer's Workbench, a three-dimensional modeling tool developed by Coryphaeus (and now owned by Centric Software).
and ends with the 'pilgrimage', the poet, like a coryphaeus, kind of sings the praises of the Yoruba god, Ogun who, according to the 'Notes On Idanre' given at the end of the poem, is "God of Iron and metallurgy, Explorer.
In Greek choruses, the cue for singing and dancing was given by the coryphaeus, and the beat was audibly initiated and sustained.
3: 'Of the work which I have done, it becomes me not here to speak, save only as relates to the Satanic School, and its Coryphaeus, the author of Don Juan.