Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Acronyms, Wikipedia.
Related to Maxim: FHM


(măk`sĭm), name of a family of inventors and munition makers. Sir Hiram Stevens Maxim, 1840–1916, was born near Sangerville, Maine. After launching on a career of inventing, he moved to England and there invented (1884) the Maxim machine gun. Among his numerous other inventions were a smokeless powder, a delayed-action fuse, and an airplane. His arms company was consolidated (1896) with the Vickers firm. He became a British subject in 1900 and was knighted in 1901. His brother, Hudson Maxim, 1853–1927, was born in Orneville, Maine, and remained in the United States. A chemist, he developed numerous inventions, including a high explosive (maximite), smokeless powders (one of them stabilite), and a self-combustive compound to propel torpedoes (motorite). Hiram Percy Maxim, 1869–1936, son of Sir Hiram, was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., and remained in the United States. After graduation from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he held many positions as a mechanical engineer and created several inventions, among them an automobile. The most spectacular was the Maxim silencer for explosive weapons (1908), but perhaps more useful were silencers for gasoline engines and the like.



a generalized, profound, laconic, and polished thought of a given author that expresses a rule of conduct or a basic logical or ethical principle by which people may be guided in their actions; for example: “When in doubt, come to the truth” (Cicero); “Avoid everything your conscience does not approve” (L. N. Tolstoy). Later on, the term “maxim” was understood in a broader sense and came to mean any wise saying.

The maxims of the French moralist writers La Rochefoucauld (Memoirs and Maxims; Russian translation, 1971), La Bruyere (Characters, or The Mores of the Present Age; Russian translation, 1964), and Vauvenargues (Complete Collected Works [in Russian], vol. 2, 1968), and the German thinkers J. W. Goethe (Maxims and Reflections, 1953) and G. K. Lichtenberg (Aphorisms; Russian translation, 1965), all represent a brilliant form of philosophical statement.

Many maxims are contained in the notebooks of the Russian historian V. O. Kliuchevskii (Letters, Diaries, Aphorisms and Thoughts About History, 1968). Parodic maxims, at times concealing practical wisdom under a mask of irony, were created by Koz’ma Prutkov (Complete Collected Works, 1965). Well-known contemporary maxims include those of the Polish writer S. J. Lec (Unkempt Thoughts, 1968) and the Soviet writer Emil’ Krotkii (Excerpts From an Unwritten Work, 1966).


Wilpert, G. Sachwörterbuch der Literatur, 4th ed. Stuttgart, 1964.
Encyclopédic Internationale “Focus,” vol. 3. Paris, 1964. Page 2179.



a brief expression of a general truth, principle, or rule of conduct


Sir Hiram Stevens. 1840--1916, British inventor of the first automatic machine gun (1884), born in the US
References in periodicals archive ?
Miss Maxim is our biggest non-celebrity event of the year and the only contest of its kind.
2 for Maxim's 20th birthday, and Maxim has performed it frequently as a pianist and conductor.
Maxim explains, "We had an old wood floor, so it means a couple tendus or a couple pirouettes and you have huge hole in your shoes.
However, Maxim was able to conserve energy as Robinson did most of the punching.
We're excited that ADAPTIX has selected Maxim as a key component supplier for its new high-performance SX-series mobile terminals.
By simply typing in their name and e-mail address, Maxim will send an e-mail alert during the vaccination season with information on where to find a local flu shot clinic," said Steve Wright, National Director of Wellness Services for Maxim Health Systems.
The tour will be produced by Moving Pictures, DPI, the entertainment division of Maxim owner Dennis Publishing and AEG Live, the nation's second largest concert promotion and touring company.
The reader is cautioned that assumptions used in the preparation of such information, which are considered reasonable by Maxim at the time of preparation, may prove to be incorrect.
Maxim requests that anyone who is approached with an offer to purchase the above parts, please notify the company by contacting their local Maxim representative or by contacting Brian Marvin, Director of Worldwide Security, by phone at (408) 737-7600, by regular mail at Maxim Integrated Products, 120 San Gabriel Drive, Sunnyvale, California, USA 94086, or by e-mail at brian_marvin@maximhq.
Maxim is a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing innovative cancer therapeutics.
com/solutions/desktops_workstations_servers for complete information on other voltage-regulator solutions for desktop-PC and server applications from Maxim.