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.

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Other Words from necromancy

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

The book is a charmingly quaint, deeply eerie supernatural mystery about grief, necromancy, and the apocalypse. Tasha Robinson, The Verge, "Films like The House With a Clock In Its Walls are poisonous to kids’ cinema," 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.

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.

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

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More Definitions for necromancy

necromancy

noun

English Language Learners Definition of necromancy

literary
: 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

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Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about necromancy

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