occult

verb
oc·​cult | \ ə-ˈkəlt How to pronounce occult (audio) , ä-\
occulted; occulting; occults

Definition of occult

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

: to shut off from view or exposure : cover, eclipse the light of a star that was about to be occulted … by Uranus itself— Jonathan Eberhart

occult

adjective
oc·​cult | \ ə-ˈkəlt How to pronounce occult (audio) , ä-; ˈä-ˌkəlt How to pronounce occult (audio) \

Definition of occult (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : not revealed : secret deep subterranean occult jealousy— J. C. Powys
2 : not easily apprehended or understood : abstruse, mysterious occult matters like nuclear physics, radiation effects and the designing of rockets— Robert Bendiner
3 : hidden from view : concealed occult underground passages
4 : of or relating to the occult … the occult arts—astrology, palmistry, card reading …— Amy Fine Collins occult practices
5 : not manifest or detectable by clinical methods alone occult carcinoma also : not present in macroscopic amounts occult blood in a stool

occult

noun
\ ə-ˈkəlt How to pronounce occult (audio) , ä-; ˈä-ˌkəlt How to pronounce occult (audio) \

Definition of occult (Entry 3 of 3)

: matters regarded as involving the action or influence of supernatural or supernormal powers or some secret knowledge of them used with the

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Other Words from occult

Verb

occulter noun

Adjective

occultly adverb

Examples of occult in a Sentence

Verb

occulted their house from prying eyes by planting large trees around it the actor's private life had long been occulted by a contrived public persona

Adjective

occult practices such as magic and fortune-telling He began to believe he had occult powers.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In July, 2017, the object occulted a star, and telescopes observed its tiny shadow passing across the star. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "The soon-to-be-famous object at the Solar System’s edge needs a name," 7 Nov. 2017 And for some lucky sky-watchers in eastern Brazil and in central and southern Africa, the moon will occult the star. National Geographic, "Spring Meteor Shower and 6 More Sky Events in May," 1 May 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Rebennack, who'd long had a fascination with occult mysticism and voodoo, told Battiste about creating a musical personality out of Dr. John, a male version of Marie Laveau, the voodoo queen. CBS News, "Dr. John, New Orleans musician whose hits included "Right Place, Wrong Time," has died at 77," 6 June 2019 Rebennack, who'd long had a fascination with occult mysticism and voodoo, told Battiste about creating a musical personality out of Dr. John, a male version of Marie Laveau, the voodoo queen. Kevin Mcgill And Cain Burdeau, azcentral, "Dr. John, colorful New Orleans musician and multiple Grammy winner, has died," 6 June 2019 In the works of HP Lovecraft, Miskatonic University is a fictional Ivy League school known for its collection of occult books. Hanna Lustig, Teen Vogue, "The Best "Riverdale" Season 3 Fan Theories, According to Reddit," 1 Oct. 2018 The recent Golden Globe winner is fantastic as a brooding detective, and the occult atmospherics and the rural American landscape exert their irresistible (if familiar) pull. Taylor Antrim, Vogue, "Three New Crime Shows To Get Hooked on Now," 12 Jan. 2019 Neither of my ideas is on 2018's top 10 Halloween costumes according to Google search data, but witch came in at number five, proving that our love for witchcraft and the occult isn't a trend that's disappearing anytime soon. Sophie Saint Thomas, Allure, "These Are the Most Popular Halloween Costumes of 2018, According to Google," 16 Oct. 2018 Aunt Hilda and Aunt Zelda What’s a witch in training without her teachers in the occult? Halie Lesavage, Glamour, "Why The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Is the Perfect Last-Minute Halloween Costume Inspiration," 25 Oct. 2018 For The House with a Clock in Its Walls, Bellairs drew inspiration from the public’s rising fascination with the occult as well as the perennial success of intrepid juvenile heroes like Tom Swift, Danny Dunn, and Nancy Drew. Noel Murray, The Verge, "For more kid-friendly horror like The House with a Clock in Its Walls, stream The Gate," 21 Sep. 2018 Inspired by ancient occult symbols, the Black Sun was incorporated into a mosaic on the floor of Wewelsburg Castle in western Germany — the ideological home base of Heinrich Himmler and the SS. Elizabeth Schumacher, USA TODAY, "Shakira selling Nazi-like trinket for 'El Dorado' tour," 21 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'occult.' 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 occult

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

circa 1513, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1888, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for occult

Verb

in part back-formation from occultation, in part continuing Middle English occulten "to keep secret, conceal," borrowed from Latin occultāre "to prevent from being seen, conceal, keep secret," frequentative derivative of occulere "to hide from view, conceal" — more at occult entry 2

Adjective

borrowed from Middle French & Latin; Middle French, borrowed from Latin occultus "hidden from sight, secret, esoteric," from past participle of occulere "to hide from view, conceal," from oc-, assimilated variant of ob- ob- + -culere, from a verb base *cel- "hide," going back to Indo-European *ḱel- "cover, conceal" — more at conceal

Noun

noun derivative of occult entry 2

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Time Traveler for occult

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

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More Definitions for occult

occult

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of occult

: of or relating to supernatural powers or practices

occult

adjective
oc·​cult | \ ə-ˈkəlt How to pronounce occult (audio) , ˈäk-ˌəlt How to pronounce occult (audio) \

Medical Definition of occult

: not manifest or detectable by clinical methods alone occult carcinoma also : not present in macroscopic amounts occult blood in a stool specimen fecal occult blood testing — compare gross sense 1b

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More from Merriam-Webster on occult

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with occult

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for occult

Spanish Central: Translation of occult

Nglish: Translation of occult for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of occult for Arabic Speakers

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