Also found in: Thesaurus, Acronyms, Idioms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Dam·o·cles(dăm′ə-klēz′) fl. fourth century bc.
Greek courtier to Dionysius the Elder, tyrant of Syracuse, who according to legend was forced to sit at a banquet table under a sword suspended by a single hair to demonstrate the precariousness of a king's fortunes.
(Classical Myth & Legend) classical myth a sycophant forced by Dionysius, tyrant of Syracuse, to sit under a sword suspended by a hair to demonstrate that being a king was not the happy state Damocles had said it was. See also Sword of Damocles
a flatterer of classical legend who, having extolled the happiness of Dionysius, tyrant of Syracuse, was seated at a banquet with a sword suspended over his head by a single hair to show him the perilous nature of that happiness.Compare sword of Damocles.
Switch to new thesaurus
|Noun||1.||Damocles - the Greek courtier to Dionysius the Elder who (according to legend) was condemned to sit under a naked sword that was suspended by a hair in order to demonstrate to him that being a king was not the happy state Damocles had said it was (4th century BC)|