pae·an also pe·an (pēən)
1. A song of joyful praise or exultation.
2. A fervent expression of joy or praise: "The art ... was a paean to paganism" (Will Durant).
3. An ancient Greek hymn of thanksgiving or invocation, especially to Apollo.
[Latin paeān, hymn of thanksgiving, often addressed to Apollo, from Greek paiān, from Paiā, a title of Apollo.]
pae′an·istic (-ĭstĭk) adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.