Ep"i*cy`cle(?), n. [L. epicyclus, Gr. ; 'epi` upon + circle. See Cycle.] 1. (Ptolemaic Astron.) A circle, whose center moves round in the circumference of a greater circle; or a small circle, whose center, being fixed in the deferent of a planet, is carried along with the deferent, and yet, by its own peculiar motion, carries the body of the planet fastened to it round its proper center.
The schoolmen were like astronomers which did feign eccentrics, and epicycles, and such engines of orbs.Bacon.
(Mech.) A circle which rolls on the circumference of another circle, either externally or internally.
ep`i*cyc"lic*al(?), a. Pertaining to, resembling, or having the motion of, an epicycle.
(Mach.), a train of mechanism in which epicyclic motion is involved; esp., a train of spur wheels, bevel wheels, or belt pulleys, in which an arm, carrying one or more of the wheels, sweeps around a center lying in an axis common to the other wheels.
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