Definition of Pelasgian in US English:



  • Relating to an ancient people inhabiting the coasts and islands of the Aegean Sea and eastern Mediterranean before the arrival of Greek-speaking peoples in the Bronze Age.

    • ‘The Pelasgian race has never yet left its home; the Hellenic has wandered often and far.’
    • ‘Ancient historical traditions of the Greeks, Egyptians, Phoenicians and Assyrians, mentioned a vast empire of the Pelasgian race, which in its epoch of power and greatness had extended over a great part of Europe, Asia and Africa’


  • A member of the Pelasgian people.

    • ‘The Pelasgians, the extended people of the ancient world, had ruled in ante-historical times not only over Hellada, but over the entire Hem peninsula.’
    • ‘The Pelasgians may have been the Sea People who around 1200 B.C. invaded the Egyptian Empire.’
    • ‘He was said to be the son of the Titans Cronos and Rhea: in that way the Hellenic invaders grafted their chief god onto the divine family of the indigenous Pelasgians.’


Late 15th century: via Latin from Greek Pelasgos + -ian.