One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
nounPlural seraphim, Plural seraphs
An angelic being, regarded in traditional Christian angelology as belonging to the highest order of the ninefold celestial hierarchy, associated with light, ardor, and purity.
- ‘From the highest to the lowest in rank, the orders are seraphim, cherubim, thrones, dominions, virtues, powers, principalities, archangels, and angels.’
- ‘Of course so have the archangel, the principle, the cherubim, seraphim, and many of the others.’
- ‘Ceilings were painted in Michelangelo-themed angelic pictures, as well as the pictures on the walls lined with the broad spanning wings of seraphs and the pursuit of gliding in avian grace towards the luminescent clouds.’
- ‘Insulting the two highest ranking seraphim may not be the most intelligent thing to do.’
- ‘So with all the angels and saints, with the cherubim and seraphim, let's all bow down in worship before the Lamb of God, who has ransomed us from death and brought us into his eternal kingdom!’
- ‘From top to bottom, the celestial hierarchy includes seraphim, cherubim, thrones; dominions, virtues, powers; principalities, archangels, and angels.’
- ‘Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a burning coal that he had taken with tongs from the altar.’
- ‘They say God could have forgiven me, let me repent and brought me back into the fold of the seraphim, yet He chose not to.’
- ‘Right above the bed, in the plaster, were images of a group of seraphs and cherubs, holding harps and bows.’
- ‘Isaiah sees the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lofty; the hem of God's robe filling the temple, seraphs in attendance, each with six wings.’
- ‘We are presented with artistic, albeit traditional, images of heaven and hell, complete with cherubim and seraphim (in the former), and demons and gargoyles (in the latter).’
- ‘I was the mightiest, strongest, most beautiful and most adored of the seraphim, there was no other above me in the ranks, aside from the Creator and his Son.’
- ‘Even the Magdalene herself, eyes turned in horror from the abandoned grave to the radiant glory of the seraphim, had the faint touch of that naiveté in her eyes.’
- ‘Never in the history of the church was there a saint, an apostle, or even the whole college of apostles, compared in such a way to the cherubim and seraphim!’
- ‘Granite steps, which are guarded by two original lamp-bearing seraphim, lead to the original wide, heavy Georgian door.’
- ‘It was a lavish manor, decorated with cherubs and seraphs.’
- ‘The God who gallops through divine places with the cherubim and seraphim is the same God who changed the world order by simply standing up and walking out of the tomb.’
- ‘Hovering above him were mighty six-winged seraphs.’
- ‘The theatre is a small gem, quaint and beautiful, recently refurbished in a mellow and plush aubergine, with plaster seraphim and cherubim gambolling cheerily along the fronts of the balcony and boxes.’
- ‘A fiery glow encircled him and it was obvious to the three seraphs there why Michael was the Warrior of God; he was frightening.’
Old English, back-formation from seraphim (plural), via late Latin and Greek from Hebrew śĕrāp̱īm. Compare with cherub.
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