clair·​voy·​ance kler-ˈvȯi-ən(t)s How to pronounce clairvoyance (audio)
: the power or faculty of discerning objects not present to the senses
: ability to perceive matters beyond the range of ordinary perception : penetration
The fortune teller practices clairvoyance when she gazes into a crystal ball to see her client's future.

Examples of clairvoyance in a Sentence

I don't believe in clairvoyance, but I can't explain how he knew those things about my grandmother. people who claim to have clairvoyance are sometimes asked to help locate missing persons
Recent Examples on the Web Most of the visual effects, in terms of the clairvoyance, were done in camera with me and a diopter, making a lot of noise and smashing glass against glass and a flashlight. Simon Thompson, Forbes, 13 Feb. 2024 The actor is set to star in Marvel’s Madame Web this month, in which Johnson plays Cassandra Webb—a New York City paramedic who begins to show signs of clairvoyance. Christian Allaire, Vogue, 4 Feb. 2024 End of carousel Of course, there’s more to Schutz than clairvoyance. Sebastian Smee, Washington Post, 5 Dec. 2023 In 2011, the Cornell psychologist Daryl Bem published a journal article that ostensibly proved the existence of clairvoyance. Gideon Lewis-Kraus, The New Yorker, 30 Sep. 2023 First, because the questions must be precise enough to pass the clairvoyance test, there is no wiggle room about what constitutes, say, large troop maneuvers. J. Peter Scoblic, Foreign Affairs, 13 Oct. 2020 According to court documents, the snippets of personal information, including recipients’ dates and places of birth, were purchased from data brokers — and used to convince people of the psychic’s clairvoyance. María Luisa Paúl, Washington Post, 21 June 2023 The same natural, intuitive clairvoyance that puts people at ease and the same powerful force of will. The Foretold Team, Los Angeles Times, 6 June 2023 The same natural, intuitive clairvoyance that put people at ease. The Foretold Team, Los Angeles Times, 11 Apr. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'clairvoyance.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


see clairvoyant entry 1

First Known Use

1838, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of clairvoyance was in 1838

Dictionary Entries Near clairvoyance

Cite this Entry

“Clairvoyance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


clair·​voy·​ance kla(ə)r-ˈvȯi-ən(t)s How to pronounce clairvoyance (audio)
: the power of seeing or knowing about things that are not present to the senses

from French clairvoyance "clairvoyance," from clair "clear" (from Latin clarus "clear") and voyant "seeing" (derived from Latin vidēre "to see") — related to clear, vision

Medical Definition


clair·​voy·​ance kla(ə)r-ˈvȯi-ən(t)s, kle(ə)r- How to pronounce clairvoyance (audio)
: the power or faculty of discerning objects or matters not present to the senses

called also cryptesthesia

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