poltergeist was our Word of the Day on 02/19/2008. Hear the podcast!
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP
Examples of poltergeist in a Sentence
we thought a poltergeist was knocking dishes off the shelves, but it turned out to just be vibrations from passing trains
Recent Examples of poltergeist from the Web
Poltergeist was written by Steven Spielberg and and released to great success in 1982.
For their part, Hill and Sheldon have never seen any poltergeists in any Dark Harbor mazes.
Vibrations from the subway line, buried below, periodically pass through the rooms like commuting poltergeists.
Much has been made of the show’s homages to beloved sci-fi imagery, with Episode 3 nodding to Steven Spielberg’s Close Encounters of the Third Kind and E.T., as well as horror classic Poltergeist.
Far away in New York, a young man hired to watch the poltergeist-attracting glass box is distracted by a latte delivery, which leads to another bloodbath.
Goldsmith composed such classic scores as Chinatown, Patton, Planet of the Apes, The Sand Pebbles, A Patch of Blue, Poltergeist, Basic Instinct, Papillon, Rudy, Gremlins, Mulan and L.A. Confidential.
Because there is no Poltergeist without this thing at 1:49.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'poltergeist.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
One of the tricks a poltergeist is known for is making "knocking" noises, so it will come as no surprise to learn that the word poltergeist translates literally from German as knocking spirit. The German verb poltern means "to knock, and "Geist" is the German word for "spirit." Another "Geist" descendant in English is "zeitgeist" ("the general intellectual, moral, and cultural climate of an era"). The English word ghost is also related; it descends from the same ancient root that led to "Geist." Although "ghost" has been used in English since before the 12th century, "poltergeist" is a relative newcomer, first appearing as an English word in the middle of the 19th century.
Origin and Etymology of poltergeist
First Known Use: 1848See Words from the same year
Synonymsapparition, bogey (also bogie or bogy), familiar spirit, hant [dialect], haunt [chiefly dialect], materialization, phantasm (also fantasm), phantom, ghost, shade, shadow, specter (or spectre), spirit, spook, sprite, vision, visitant, wraith
Related Wordsangel, daimon, familiar, genie, genius, jinni (or jinn also djinni or djinn), shaitan; double, doppelgänger (or doppelganger), fetch; lemures, manes; incubus, lamia, succubus, vampire, zombie (also zombi); cacodemon, demon (or daemon), devil, fiend, ghoul, imp
POLTERGEIST Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of poltergeist for English Language Learners
: a ghost that makes strange noises and causes objects to move
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up poltergeist? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).