Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

EXAMPLES FROM THE WEB FOR SYMBOL

Here, perchance, may be found a clue in symbol to the family strife.

He wished to be dressed completely in white, as a symbol of his innocence.

From the symbol of her degradation, she looked to the man whose action had placed it there.

But was the "star and crescent" the symbol of the City of Constantine?

After her departure, I remarked that the symbol was none of the most apt.

Or take it as a symbol, since that may come to be one with the thing symbolized.

A king's staff of office, the sign and symbol of his authority.

The symbol of that influence was that ancient symbol of the humble and humorous—a donkey.

It ceases to be heard as a symbol, and appears only as a sign.

Wealth, or its symbol, is a medium of translating the one into the other.

WORD ORIGIN

early 15c., "creed, summary, religious belief," from Late Latin symbolum "creed, token, mark," from Greek symbolon "token, watchword" (applied c.250 by Cyprian of Carthage to the Apostles' Creed, on the notion of the "mark" that distinguishes Christians from pagans), literally "that which is thrown or cast together," from syn- "together" (see syn-) + bole "a throwing, a casting, the stroke of a missile, bolt, beam," from bol-, nominative stem of ballein "to throw" (see ballistics).

The sense evolution in Greek is from "throwing things together" to "contrasting" to "comparing" to "token used in comparisons to determine if something is genuine." Hence, "outward sign" of something. The meaning "something which stands for something else" first recorded 1590 (in "Faerie Queene").

MORE RELATED WORDS FOR SYMBOL

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.