masc. proper name, from Latin Lucianus (source also of French Lucien), a derivative of Roman Lucius, from lux (genitive lucis) "light" (see light (n.)). The Hellenistic Greek writer (c. 160 C.E., his name is Latinized from Greek Loukianos) was noted as the type of a scoffing wit. Hence Lucianist (1580s) in reference to that sort of writer; it also was "the name of two sorts of heretics" [OED].
updated on October 10, 2017