Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Something, such as a belief or institution, that elicits blind and destructive devotion or to which people are ruthlessly sacrificed.
  • n. An overwhelming, advancing force that crushes or seems to crush everything in its path: "It doesn't assume that people need necessarily remain passive when confronted by what appears to be the juggernaut of history” ( Christopher Lehmann-Haupt).
  • n. Used as a title for the Hindu deity Krishna.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A literal or metaphorical force or object regarded as unstoppable, that will crush all in its path.
  • n. A large, cumbersome truck or lorry, especially an artic (typically used somewhat disparagingly).
  • n. An institution that incites destructive devotion or to which people are carelessly sacrificed.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One of the names under which Vishnu, in his incarnation as Krishna, is worshiped by the Hindus. See also jagannath.
  • n. Any large, unstoppable force, power, or popular movement which defeats or destroys any person who gets in its way or attempts to stop it.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The popular form of Jagannatha, the name of the famous Hindu idol. See Jagannatha, 2.
  • n. Figuratively, something, as an idea, custom, fashion, requirement, etc., to which one either devotes himself or is blindly sacrificed.
  • To crush as if by Juggernaut.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a massive inexorable force that seems to crush everything in its way
  • n. a crude idol of Krishna
  • n. an avatar of Vishnu

Etymologies

Hindi jagannāth, title of Krishna, from Sanskrit jagannāthaḥ, lord of the world : jagat, moving, the world (from earlier present participle of jigāti, he goes; see gwā- in Indo-European roots) + nāthaḥ, lord (from nāthate, he helps, protects). Senses 1 and 2, from the fact that worshipers have thrown themselves under the wheels of a huge car or wagon on which the idol of Krishna was drawn in an annual procession at Puri in east-central India.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Hindustani Hindi जगन्नाथ/Oriya ଜଗନ୍ନାଥ/ Urdu جگنّاتھ (jagannāth), from Sanskrit जगन्नाथ (jagannātha, "lord of the universe") (Jagannath), a title for the Hindu deity Vishnu's avatar Krishna. English form influenced by suffix -naut ("sailor"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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