Expanding your knowledge

Merriam Webster’s Word of the day

March 16, 2015

rhadamanthine • \rad-uh-MAN-thun\ • adjective
: (often capitalized) rigorously strict or just

The judge took the maliciousness of the crime into account and decided upon a rhadamanthine punishment.

“Sometimes, she writes with incandescent hope; often, she manifests a disagreeable proclivity for passing Rhadamanthine judgment on us all.” — Andrew Solomon, New York Times, December 12, 2014

Did you know?
In Greek mythology, there were three judges of the underworld: Minos, Aeacus, and Rhadamanthus. Minos, a son of Zeus and Europa, had been the king of Crete before becoming supreme judge in the underworld after his death. Aeacus, another son of Zeus, was king of Aegina before joining the underworld triumvirate. Rhadamanthus, brother of Minos and king of the Cyclades Islands, was especially known for being inflexible when administering his judgment—hence, the meaning of rhadamanthine as “rigorously strict or just.”


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