necromancy

noun
nec·​ro·​man·​cy | \ ˈne-krə-ˌman(t)-sē How to pronounce necromancy (audio) \

Definition of necromancy

1 : conjuration (see conjure sense 2a) of the spirits of the dead for purposes of magically revealing the future or influencing the course of events The novel centers on the practice of necromancy and its influence on the world of the living.
2 : magic, sorcery Townspeople accused her of necromancy.

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from necromancy

necromancer \ ˈne-​krə-​ˌman(t)-​sər How to pronounce necromancy (audio) \ noun
necromantic \ ˌne-​krə-​ˈman-​tik How to pronounce necromancy (audio) \ adjective
necromantically \ ˌne-​krə-​ˈman-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce necromancy (audio) \ adverb

Examples of necromancy in a Sentence

The town accused her of witchcraft and necromancy. in the conjuring of the souls of the dead, necromancy seemed to offer human beings a means of exerting some control over an uncertain world
Recent Examples on the Web Today a substantial subset of people seem to regard science as the equivalent of necromancy or alchemy, or, like, Rumpelstiltskin. Washington Post, 10 Sep. 2021 The hearing delved into originalism, the Founding Fathers, King George III and even necromancy. Petra Cahill, NBC News, 5 Dec. 2019 The Nightsisters The Nightsisters, first introduced in season 3 of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, were a coven of witches who reside on the planet Dathomir and use the Force to practice magic, including illusion and necromancy. Nick Romano, EW.com, 21 Nov. 2019 In other words, the Bunnies fail both literally, within their necromancy, and metaphorically, within their writing, to bring their characters to life. Hermione Hoby, The New Yorker, 3 July 2019 The book is a charmingly quaint, deeply eerie supernatural mystery about grief, necromancy, and the apocalypse. Tasha Robinson, The Verge, 23 Sep. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of necromancy

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for necromancy

Middle English nycromancie "sorcery, conjuration of spirits," borrowed from Late Latin necromantīa "divination from an exhumed corpse," borrowed from Late Greek nekromanteía "divination by conjuration of the dead," from Greek nekro- necro- + -manteia -mancy; replacing earlier Middle English nigromance, nygromancye, borrowed from Anglo-French nigromance, nigromancie, borrowed from Medieval Latin nigromantia, alteration of necromantia by association with Latin nigr-, niger "black"

Note: The ancient Greek correspondents to later nekromanteía were nekyomanteía and nékyia (from nékȳs "corpse"), the former used particularly to describe Odysseus's journey to Hades in Book 11 of the Odyssey to consult the spirits of the dead.

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About necromancy

Time Traveler for necromancy

Time Traveler

The first known use of necromancy was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near necromancy

necromancing

necromancy

necromant

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for necromancy

Last Updated

18 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Necromancy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/necromancy. Accessed 24 Sep. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for necromancy

necromancy

noun

English Language Learners Definition of necromancy

: the practice of talking to the spirits of dead people
: the use of magic powers especially for evil purposes

More from Merriam-Webster on necromancy

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about necromancy

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!