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Permanent link for this word: crown of thorns

Aug 3, 2005
This week's theme
Biblical allusions

This week's words
potter's field
crown of thorns
widow's cruse
golden calf
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crown of thorns

(kroun ov thornz) Pronunciation RealAudio

1. An onerous burden or an affliction that causes intense suffering.
2. A thorny bush (Euphorbia milii) native to Madagascar, grown as a houseplant. (picture)
3. A starfish (Acanthaster planci) found in the Pacific that feeds on live corals. (picture)

After the biblical account of a mock crown made of thorny branches that Roman soldiers placed on Jesus's head before his crucifixion.

"Manipur chief minister O.I. Singh wears a crown of thorns. With battlelines clearly drawn on several fronts, it will take a major effort to close ranks."
Patricia Mukhim; A Recipe For Disaster?; The Telegraph (Calcutta, India); Jul 5, 2005.

See more usage examples of crown of thorns in Vocabulary.com's dictionary.


You have just dined, and however scrupulously the slaughterhouse is concealed in the graceful distance of miles, there is complicity. -Ralph Waldo Emerson, writer and philosopher (1803-1882)

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