- the highest heaven, supposed by the ancients to contain the pure element of fire.
- the visible heavens; the firmament.
- archaic the highest part of the (supposedly spherical) heavens, thought in ancient times to contain the pure element of fire and by early Christians to be the abode of God and the angels
- poetic the heavens or sky
adjective Also: empyreal
- of or relating to the sky, the heavens, or the empyrean
- heavenly or sublime
- archaic composed of fire
mid-14c. (as empyre), from Greek empyros “fiery,” from en (see en- (2)) + pyr “fire” (see fire (n.)); confused by early writers with imperial. In Greek cosmology, the highest heaven, the sphere of pure fire; later baptized with a Christian gloss as “the abode of God and the angels.”