Main definitions of daemon in English

: daemon1daemon2

daemon1

(also daimon)

noun

  • 1(in ancient Greek belief) a divinity or supernatural being of a nature between gods and humans.

    • ‘Exiled daemons are reincarnated into all sorts of living forms, finally coming to be as prophets, poets, physicians, and leaders among men.’
    • ‘I am an ancient daemon, and although I give the impression of being a model of youth and femininity, I have lived so many centuries I have begun to lose track.’
    • ‘‘He was a well known thief and his daemon is a black dragon,’ said Ana.’
    • ‘Iamblichus also stressed that theurgists usually worked with lesser divinities - heroes, daimons and angels - and only the greatest of all, in exceptional circumstances, would trouble actual deities.’
    1. 1.1 An inner or attendant spirit or inspiring force.
      • ‘Thanks to the daimon who kept him from swallowing Reformist preaching in his youth, future readers will never view him as a convert.’
      • ‘He wasn't so sure that the welding of artist and model improved the art, that her sudden fetish for Captain Hunt's bete-noir would inspire the strumming fingers of her daemon.’
      • ‘We follow that inner voice, that angel-like soul (that daimon, as Plato called it) - or, stifled, we can become demonic.’
      • ‘Like the daimon of Socrates who indicates only what not to do, we too know instinctively, aesthetically, when a fish stinks, when the sense of beauty is offended.’
      • ‘They ‘send’ - via Mercury - those inner daemons that are bent on shaking up and shattering limiting preconceptions of who we are and what our role in life is.’
      • ‘Baudelaire the poet has a special daimonic vision insofar as the poet has insight into the daimon described by Hesiod as unseen by the one being influenced.’
      • ‘Baudelaire's mystical vision, especially in the analogy to the cat as sign and symbol of the daimon, leads to a sense that ecstasy is possible when the self is aware of its own limitations and seeks to go beyond them.’
      • ‘But the idea that Socrates introduced a ‘new god’ was probably a reference to his daimon, an internal individual guiding spirit which he claimed always stopped him when he was about to do something wrong.’
      • ‘It was his daimon who intervened in the Phaedrus, after Socrates had argued that it was better for a boy to yield to a man who did not love him than to a lover.’
      • ‘‘Every human has a daemon that amplifies their talents and protects them to a certain degree,’ said Cameron.’
      • ‘Casey's brain kicked into gear, her inner daemons flagging something from an old puzzle book.’
      • ‘The Latin equivalent of daimon is genius, the spirit double that is born and dies with a man and influences his conduct.’
      • ‘That's how the spirit is controlled - daemons are fiercely independent beings, if they can get away - they will.’
      • ‘Meeks' own concluding essay, The Christian Proteus, reminds us of the shape-changing aspect of Paul, a daimon who questions us just when we think we are questioning him.’
      inspiring force, genius, numen, demon
      tutelary spirit, familiar spirit, attendant spirit
      genius loci
      View synonyms
  • 2

    archaic spelling of demon
    • ‘is the entire town possessed by a malevolent daemon, forcing people to worship it by carving its image into fruit and vegetables, and hanging its likeness in their windows?’
    • ‘Many returned to the old idea that the child was an evil spirit, or daemon sent to punish the royal family.’
    • ‘The ghosts are back; the manic daemons who make me think of spirits and kill the science.’
    • ‘We shall send these daemons back to hell, where they belong!’
    • ‘Before our modern era most people who had encounters knew that what they were dealing with were daemons, dragons, gnomes, fairies and trolls.’

Origin

Mid 16th century: common spelling of demon until the 19th century.

Pronunciation:

daemon

/ˈdēmən/

Main definitions of daemon in English

: daemon1daemon2

daemon2

(also demon)

noun

Computing
  • A background process that handles requests for services such as print spooling and file transfers, and is dormant when not required.

    • ‘You are also given a list of daemons/processes to start automatically at boot, and you can enable or disable them as you see fit.’
    • ‘Unlike some of the other daemons we have covered in this series, these two have interactive user programs that control them.’
    • ‘I added this new line with an appropriate IP address for my subnet, and restarted the named daemon.’
    • ‘Before you can start using the administration daemon over the network, you have to create a keytab file containing the key for one of the kadmin principals created when we initialized our realm.’
    • ‘The slave component is run as a daemon (Unix) or system service (Win 32).’

Origin

1980s: perhaps from d(isk) a(nd) e(xecution) mon(itor) or from de(vice) mon(itor), or merely a transferred use of demon.

Pronunciation:

daemon

/ˈdēmən/