- The definition of an abyss is an extremely deep or bottomless hole or chasm, either literal or figurative.
- A bottomless pit is an example of an abyss.
- A person who is very depressed may be said to have fallen into an abyss.
A switchback path leads into the abyss.
- a deep fissure in the earth; bottomless gulf; chasm
- anything too deep for measurement; profound depth: abyss of shame, of time, etc.
- the ocean depths
- Theol. the primeval void or chaos before the Creation
Origin of abyssClassical Latin abyssus ; from Classical Greek abyssos ; from a-, without + byssos, bottom
- An immeasurably deep chasm, depth, or void: “lost in the vast abysses of space and time” (Loren Eiseley).
- a. In the book of Genesis, the primeval Chaos out of which earth and sky were formed.b. The abode of evil spirits; hell.
Origin of abyssMiddle English abissus, from Late Latin abyssus, from Greek abussos, bottomless : a-, without; see a–1 + bussos, bottom.
- Abbreviation of Abyssinia.
- Abbreviation of Abyssinian.
- Hell; the bottomless pit; primeval chaos; a confined subterranean ocean. [First attested around 1350 to 1470.]
- (frequently figuratively) A bottomless or unfathomed depth, gulf, or chasm; hence, any deep, immeasurable; any void space. [First attested in the late 16th century.]
- Anything infinite, immeasurable, or profound. [First attested in the late 16th century.]
- Moral depravity; vast intellectual or moral depth.
- An impending catastrophic happening.
- (heraldry) The center of an escutcheon.
- (impending catastrophic happening): It is typically preceded by the word the.
From Middle English abissus, from Late Latin abyssus (“a bottomless gulf”), from Ancient Greek ἄβυσσος (abussos, “bottomless”), from ἀ- (a-, “not”)+ βυσσός (bussos, “deep place”), , from βυθός (bythos, “deep place”).