mys·​ti·​fi·​ca·​tion | \ ˌmi-stə-fə-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce mystification (audio) \

Definition of mystification

1a : an act or instance of mystifying
b : an obscuring especially of capitalist or social dynamics (as by making them equivalent to natural laws) that is seen in Marxist thought as an impediment to critical consciousness the mystification of the sources of wealth— Henry Staten
2 : the quality or state of being mystified
3 : something designed to mystify

Examples of mystification in a Sentence

the new information did little to ease our mystification an event that is one of the great mystifications in all of maritime history
Recent Examples on the Web There’s a sort of indifference that turns into mystification that turns into sadness around that. New York Times, 8 July 2022 As with other elements of a mega-celebrity’s life, a front-facing, pathbreaking pregnancy like Rihanna’s necessitates a certain level of mystification of the pains taken behind the scenes. The New Yorker, 30 Apr. 2022 The December 1941 attacks are the subject of considerable mystification in the United States. Daniel Immerwahr, The Atlantic, 4 Apr. 2022 There has been some mystification in Washington as to why administration successes have not registered more. Stephen Collinson, CNN, 11 Feb. 2022 One interviewee, a teenager at the time of the festival, expresses mystification at having evolved from a mild-mannered kid to a destructive Lord of the Flies character over the course of the weekend. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, 27 July 2021 On Twitter, users have expressed shock and mystification over the design. Marc Bain, Quartz, 9 June 2021 John Berger’s idea of ‘mystification,’ for example, describes how the ‘original’ upholds ‘ideological interests of the ruling class’ through arcane ways of emphasizing technique. Matthew Carey Salyer, Forbes, 13 May 2021 But, as British viewers found to their mystification, American TV eagerly advertises pharmaceutical remedies for practically every other imaginable human condition. Samanth Subramanian, Quartz, 8 Mar. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of mystification

1816, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for mystification

borrowed from French, "hoodwinking, trickery," from mystifier "to hoodwink, dupe" + -ification -ification — more at mystify

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The first known use of mystification was in 1816

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Last Updated

19 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Mystification.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Aug. 2022.

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