ec·​sta·​sy | \ ˈek-stə-sē How to pronounce ecstasy (audio) \
plural ecstasies

Definition of ecstasy

1a : a state of being beyond reason and self-control
b archaic : swoon
2 : a state of overwhelming emotion especially : rapturous delight
3 : trance especially : a mystic or prophetic trance
4 often capitalized : a synthetic amphetamine analog C11H15NO2 used illicitly for its mood-enhancing and hallucinogenic properties

called also MDMA

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Choose the Right Synonym for ecstasy

ecstasy, rapture, transport mean intense exaltation of mind and feelings. ecstasy and rapture both suggest a state of trance or near immobility produced by an overpowering emotion. ecstasy may apply to any strong emotion (such as joy, fear, rage, adoration). religious ecstasy rapture usually implies intense bliss or beatitude. in speechless rapture transport applies to any powerful emotion that lifts one out of oneself and usually provokes vehement expression or frenzied action. in a transport of rage

Examples of ecstasy in a Sentence

His performance sent the audience into ecstasies. actors are typically in ecstasy upon winning an Oscar
Recent Examples on the Web The autopsy also showed that an oily substance found in his toilet was ecstasy, a drug that no one is prescribed in a juvenile detention facility. Cameron Knight, The Enquirer, "'Whatever is done in the dark will come to light:' Still no answers in teen's death at detention center," 2 Apr. 2021 The melted smoked gouda spilled over onto the plate, making for some fleeting dipping ecstasy. Matt Wake |, al, "Alabama white barbeque sauce plus nachos equals yes," 24 Mar. 2021 Responding officers learned the man was having a bad reaction after smoking marijuana and using ecstasy pills. cleveland, "Man threatens woman after bad reaction to ecstasy: South Euclid Police Blotter," 5 Mar. 2021 There was ecstasy and beauty, yes, but also fear and, often, so often, intense nausea. Ezra Klein New York Times, Star Tribune, "Can magic mushrooms heal us?," 19 Mar. 2021 Noseda’s reading fully embraces these contradictory impulses — devastation and tenderness, anguish and ecstasy, brute force and lithe grace — to transformative effect. Washington Post, "Gianandrea Noseda and the National Symphony Orchestra reunite, and it’s a joyful noise," 11 Mar. 2021 In the late 1990s, Dutch ecstasy pills swamped the U.S., prompting the Clinton administration to publicly denounce the Netherlands as a narco-state and threaten economic sanctions. Valentina Pop, WSJ, "Mexican Cartels Are Now Cooking Chinese Chemicals in Dutch Meth Labs," 8 Dec. 2020 Those cases involved steroids, cocaine, ecstasy and credit card theft, Feiler said. Author: Devlin Barrett, Matt Zapotosky, Anchorage Daily News, "Proud Boys leader once cooperated with FBI, informed on other suspects in 2012 fraud case," 28 Jan. 2021 Authorities said Wayne also had possession of cocaine, ecstasy, and oxycodone. Michael Lee, Washington Examiner, "Trump pardons rapper Lil Wayne hours before leaving office," 20 Jan. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ecstasy.' 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 ecstasy

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for ecstasy

Middle English exstasie, extasy "elation," borrowed from Middle French extasie, "stupor, transported state," borrowed from Late Latin ecstasis, extasis "trance, swoon, profound sleep," borrowed from Greek ékstasis "displacement, mental distraction, astonishment, trance," from eksta-, stem of existánai "to displace, drive out of one's senses, confound," exístasthai "to be astonished, lose consciousness" (from ex- ex- entry 3 + histánai "to cause to stand, place," hístasthai "to be standing") + -sis -sis — more at stand entry 1

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Time Traveler for ecstasy

Time Traveler

The first known use of ecstasy was in the 14th century

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Statistics for ecstasy

Last Updated

6 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ecstasy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for ecstasy



English Language Learners Definition of ecstasy

: a state of very great happiness : extreme delight
: an illegal drug that is used to produce a feeling of excitement and pleasure


ec·​sta·​sy | \ ˈek-stə-sē How to pronounce ecstasy (audio) \
plural ecstasies

Kids Definition of ecstasy

: very great happiness or delight


ec·​sta·​sy | \ ˈek-stə-sē How to pronounce ecstasy (audio) \
plural ecstasies

Medical Definition of ecstasy

1 : a trance state in which intense absorption (as in religious ideation) is accompanied by loss of sense perception and voluntary control
2 often capitalized : a synthetic amphetamine analog C11H15NO2 used illicitly for its mood-enhancing and hallucinogenic properties

called also MDMA, methylenedioxymethamphetamine, XTC

Other Words from ecstasy

ecstatic \ ek-​ˈstat-​ik How to pronounce ecstasy (audio) \ adjective

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