apparition

noun
ap·​pa·​ri·​tion | \ ˌa-pə-ˈri-shən How to pronounce apparition (audio) \

Definition of apparition

1a : an unusual or unexpected sight : phenomenon strange apparitions in the sky
b : a ghostly figure reported seeing ghostly apparitions in the old house
2 : the act of becoming visible : appearance the apparition of sunlight through the window

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Other Words from apparition

apparitional \ ˌa-​pə-​ˈrish-​nəl How to pronounce apparitional (audio) , -​ˈri-​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective

Synonyms for apparition

Synonyms

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Examples of apparition in a Sentence

an eccentric who claimed to have photographed an apparition in her very own house
Recent Examples on the Web The anniversary of her apparition to an indigenous Mexican man on a nearby hilltop has been celebrated since 1754. Nina Strochlic, National Geographic, "Every year millions of miracle-seeking pilgrims visit Mexico City," 24 Dec. 2019 Their sudden apparition was at once absolutely ordinary—their existence is no secret, after all—and absolutely extraordinary. Steve King, Condé Nast Traveler, "Exploring India’s Spiritual Center from the New Taj Rishikesh," 23 Dec. 2019 In the ruins of that Death Star, Rey also clashes with a dark apparition of herself wielding a double-bladed red lightsaber. Oliver Gettell, EW.com, "A guide to the Star Wars callbacks and parallels in The Rise of Skywalker," 20 Dec. 2019 Broadway audiences have to accept watching humans in costumes; cinematic audiences demand (or are given) technological apparitions. Rumaan Alam, The New Republic, "Cats Got Your Tongue," 24 Dec. 2019 The orphan sounded the alarm as soon as the apparition materialized, just as the kahuna had instructed. Alia Wong, The Atlantic, "How to Save a Dying Language," 9 Dec. 2019 The archbishop didn't believe Diego's story about the woman's apparition and refused his request. Laura Rodríguez, chicagotribune.com, "Why 200,000 people travel each December on foot, by horse and even semitruck to visit the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Des Plaines," 11 Dec. 2019 These apparitions float above and alongside an empty, throne-like rattan chair similar to the one in which former Black Panther Huey P. Newton famously posed in 1968. Mary Carole Mccauley, baltimoresun.com, "BMA exhibit of black abstract artists explores what’s real and what only appears to be real," 15 Nov. 2019 This strange apparition happens again just as Mercury becomes engulfed by the sun’s disk. Andrew Fazekas, National Geographic, "See Mercury glide across the sun in rare sky show," 8 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'apparition.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of apparition

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for apparition

Middle English apparicion, borrowed from Anglo-French & Medieval Latin; Anglo-French appariciun "appearance," borrowed from Medieval Latin appāritiōn-, appāritiō "appearance, supernatural manifestation, Epiphany," going back to Late Latin, "appearance" (Latin, "service, attendance"), from Latin appāri-, variant stem of appārēre "to be visible, be evident, attend, serve" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of verbal action — more at appear

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Time Traveler for apparition

Time Traveler

The first known use of apparition was in the 15th century

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Statistics for apparition

Last Updated

11 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Apparition.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/apparitional?pronunciation&lang=en_us&dir=a&file=appari02. Accessed 19 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for apparition

apparition

noun
How to pronounce apparition (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of apparition

formal : a ghost or spirit of a dead person

apparition

noun
ap·​pa·​ri·​tion | \ ˌa-pə-ˈri-shən How to pronounce apparition (audio) \

Kids Definition of apparition

1 : ghost
2 : an unusual or unexpected sight What it was, whether bear or man … the terror of this new apparition brought me to a stand.— Robert Louis Stevenson, Treasure Island

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