Definition of empyrean in English:


Pronunciation: /ˌɛmpɪˈriːən//ɛmˈpɪrɪən//ˌɛmpʌɪˈriːən/


  • Relating to heaven.

    figurative ‘the empyrean dictates of critical reasoning’
    ‘the third or empyrean heaven’
    • ‘Electronics and haunting effects bring an empyrean stillness to the album's middle third.’
    • ‘In America, or the more empyrean realm of art, few citizens were more senior than Al, none more youthful, cogent, articulate or productive.’
    • ‘To emulate a human realistically, you don't have to realistically capture the empyrean majesty of our imaginations.’
    • ‘Not only did the band's name prefigure the attacks, but so did the album's elegiac art work of angels tracing empyrean paths to a fiery orange heaven.’
    • ‘But, not a drop of empyrean manna falls on my parched lips to assuage the thirst of aeons.’
    divine, holy, celestial, godlike, godly, angelic, seraphic, cherubic, blessed, blest, beatific, immortal
    View synonyms


  • 1The highest part of heaven, thought by the ancients to be the realm of pure fire.

    ‘the unapproachable splendour of the empyrean’
    • ‘Mark Antony well knew the mischief he aimed at, and sensed that his and Octavius's moment had come; all they needed to do was to mount Caesar's ghost and they would ride to the empyrean.’
    • ‘She genuinely, and far less self-interestedly than most, wanted to help propel young talent to the empyrean.’
    • ‘Someday it may even be possible for the soul of a skeptical scientist to orbit into the empyrean, carrying his karma with him, looking for a suitable body to be born into!’
    • ‘The Pro Arte Quartet (plus cellist Anthony Pini) contributes a C-major Quintet whose first two movements ensure the work's place in the empyrean.’
    1. 1.1literary The visible heavens; the sky.
      ‘we rose through the polluted air into the clear empyrean above’
      • ‘But the empyrean vault is little less crowded than before.’


Late Middle English (as an adjective): via medieval Latin from Greek empurios, from en- in + pur fire. The noun dates from the mid 17th century.