Main definitions of tantalus in English

: tantalus1Tantalus2

tantalus1

noun

British
  • A stand in which decanters of liquor can be locked up though still visible.

    • ‘At his Street sale on the Tuesday, there is a pair of late 19th century baluster-shaped glass decanters with diamond-cut decoration (estimate € 80 to € 100) and two late Victorian oak tantalus, each with a very affordable estimate of € 100 to € 150.’
    • ‘This tantalus is decorated with exquisitely carved exterior: on the top is a vignette comprised of three birds; a chick and the chick's parents.’
    • ‘More affordable are Victorian decanters and a tantalus, a lockable case usually made to hold three cut-glass decanters.’
    • ‘The first lockable Tantalus appeared around the mid 19th Century and was first seen in England around 1870.’

Pronunciation

tantalus

/ˈtæn(t)ələs//ˈtan(t)ələs/

Main definitions of tantalus in English

: tantalus1Tantalus2

Tantalus2

proper noun

Greek Mythology
  • A Lydian king, son of Zeus and father of Pelops. As punishment for his crimes (which included killing Pelops), he was forced to remain in chin-deep water with fruit-laden branches over his head, neither of which he could reach to drink or eat. His name is the origin of the word tantalize.

Pronunciation

Tantalus

/ˈtan(t)ələs//ˈtæn(t)ələs/