Definition of incantation
: a use of spells or verbal charms spoken or sung as a part of a ritual of magic; also : a written or recited formula of words designed to produce a particular effect
incantationalplay \ˌin-ˌkan-ˈtā-shnəl, -shə-nəl\ adjective
incantatoryplay \in-ˈkan-tə-ˌtōr-ē, -ˌtȯr-\ adjective
Examples of incantation in a sentence
trying to produce a miracle by incantation
<hovering over the sick child, the witch doctor muttered mysterious incantations>
Did You Know?
Incantation comes directly from the Latin word incantare, "enchant". Incantare itself has cantare as a root, which reminds us that magic and ritual have always been associated with chanting and music. Incantations have often been in strange languages; "Abracadabra" is a not-so-serious version of an incantation.
Origin and Etymology of incantation
Middle English incantacioun, from Medieval French incantation, from Late Latin incantation-, incantatio, from Latin incantare to enchant — more at enchant
First Known Use: 14th century
INCANTATION Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of incantation for English Language Learners
: a series of words used to make something magic happen
Seen and Heard
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