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
Recent Examples of incantation from the Web
Almost all groups launching ICOs reiterate some version of this idea to potential buyers, in part as a kind of incantation to ward off financial regulators.
A black man expecting to be treated fairly within the legal system would be just as well-served closing his eyes, standing in front of a bathroom mirror and reciting an incantation.
The names were an incantation, a way of proving her love for her father who loved real estate.
The ground in front of the bench is worn smooth by years of visitors’ feet, and the tree is just steps from the incantations of an active nest of a Cooper’s hawk and red-breasted nut hatch.
Yet the absence even of ritual incantation was both telling and alarming.
The chorus’s hypnotic incantations have the undergirding of a glistening orchestral landscape, sometimes swaying, sometimes blooming.
Said Mohammed turns to oils, spices and incantations when he is called on to hunt down and expel a jinni that is causing harm to humans.
The four-woman band played nine shows in 19 days rotating among three clubs, testing out new material onstage that moved with post-punk impact amid melody, incantation, sinewy groove and formidable noise.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'incantation.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
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.
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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