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definition of the word abyss

by the Wiktionnary

From Middle English abissus < Latin abyssus (a bottomless gulf) < Ancient Greek ἄβυσσος (abyssos), bottomless) ἀ- (a-), not)+ βυσσός (bysso), depth).



abyss (plural abysses)

  1. A bottomless or unfathomed depth, gulf, or chasm; hence, any deep, immeasurable, and, specifically, hell, or the bottomless pit.
  2. Infinite time; a vast intellectual or moral depth.
  3. (heraldry) The center of an escutcheon.

This word, in its leading uses, is associated with the cosmological notions of the Hebrews, having reference to a supposed illimitable mass of waters from which our earth sprung, and beneath whose profound depths the wicked were punished.

Definition from Wiktionary
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