We're working on a new site. Click here to get a sneak preview.


noun tal·is·man \ˈta-ləs-mən, -ləz-\

: an object (such as a ring or stone) that is believed to have magic powers and to cause good things to happen to the person who has it

plural tal·is·mans

Full Definition of TALISMAN

:  an object held to act as a charm to avert evil and bring good fortune
:  something producing apparently magical or miraculous effects
tal·is·man·ic \ˌta-ləs-ˈma-nik, -ləz-\ adjective
tal·is·man·i·cal·ly \-ni-k(ə-)lē\ adverb

Examples of TALISMAN

  1. <a pendant of white nephrite jade is often worn by Indians as a talisman to ward off heart disease>

Origin of TALISMAN

French talisman or Spanish talismán or Italian talismano; all from Arabic ṭilsam, from Middle Greek telesma, from Greek, consecration, from telein to initiate into the mysteries, complete, from telos end — more at telos
First Known Use: 1638

Related to TALISMAN

Other Occult Terms

augury, censor, invocation, lucidity, metempsychosis, mojo, numinous, preternatural, weird, wraith
TALISMANIC Defined for Kids


noun tal·is·man \ˈta-lə-smən\
plural tal·is·mans

Definition of TALISMAN for Kids

:  a ring or stone carved with symbols and believed to have magical powers :  charm


Next Word in the Dictionary: talithPrevious Word in the Dictionary: TalishiAll Words Near: talisman
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears