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

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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 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 My favorite element, which mirrors my mystification at the matter-of-factness of the image, is an adorably witless donkey. Peter Schjeldahl, The New Yorker, 8 Feb. 2021 Han has a perfect ear for a child’s perception of the world, that uncanny mixture of confidence, innocence and mystification. Washington Post, 30 Nov. 2020 Throughout, however, the biography is judicious on topics that often inspire hyperbole and mystification. Donald S. Lopez, New York Times, 25 Feb. 2020 Money and mystification, not knowledge or ignorance, are its cardinal points. Longreads, 17 Sep. 2019 But even in those conversations, officials often expressed mystification about how decisions in the Trump administration were made and policy generated. David E. Sanger,, 10 July 2019 But even in those conversations, officials often expressed mystification about how decisions in the Trump administration were made and policy was generated. David E. Sanger, New York Times, 10 July 2019

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.

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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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Time Traveler for mystification

Time Traveler

The first known use of mystification was in 1816

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Statistics for mystification

Last Updated

20 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Mystification.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 Jun. 2021.

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