Origin: Greek

Μεγαιρα (Megaira)

Meaning: a Latinized form of Greek Megaira which is derived from megairo meaning “to grudge” or meaning “the jealous one”.

In Greek mythology, Megaera is one of the Furies (Tisiphone and Alecto are the other two), who avenge crimes against the natural order such as murder, unfilial conduct, crimes against the gods and especially a crime against a parent by a child (Orestes anyone?).

Megaera has also become a word in several European languages denoting a woman who is shrewish and ill-tempered.

Megara (a name from Disney’s Hercules) is either a variant of Megaera or, more likely, is derived from an ancient Greek city derived from megaron from Greek megas meaning “large, great, marvelous” refering to a large hall. In Greek mythology, Megara was a princess, the daughter of the king of Thebes, who was given to Hercules/Heracles after he’d saved Thebes from the Minyans. Megara gave birth to a son and a daughter, who were both killed by Hercules after Hera cursed him with a temporary madness and leading to him to perform the 12 Labors in atonement. Some sources say Megara was also killed, others that she was given to his nephew Iolaus after he left Thebes, who later gave him a daughter Leipephilene.

According to, Megaera is pronounced muh-jeer-uh although I’ve always pronounced it how it looks: meg-aer-uh


2 Comments Add yours

  1. I’m also inclined to pronounce Megaira with a hard ‘g.’ I’ve never heard of Greek words or names being pronounced with a ‘j’ sound, though I suppose pronouncing it Meh-yeer-uh might be doable if you’re thinking of modern Greek gammas.
    In which languages is Megaera used as a word?


    1. apolla13 says:

      I found it on (link below) though it’s not used as a word.

      I couldn’t find anything on forvo which is my favorite site to go to for pronounciations and I don’t even know if the pronounciation is accurate- I really prefer how I’ve been saying it for years now.

      Liked by 1 person

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