Word of the Day : June 21, 2017


noun doo-EN-day


: the power to attract through personal magnetism and charm

Did You Know?

The word duende refers to a spirit in Spanish, Portuguese, and Filipino folklore and literally means "ghost" or "goblin" in Spanish. It is believed to derive from the phrase dueño de casa, which means "owner of a house." The term is traditionally used in flamenco music or other art forms to refer to the mystical or powerful force given off by a performer to draw in the audience. The Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca wrote in his essay "Teoria y Juego del Duende" ("Play and Theory of the Duende") that duende "is a power and not a behavior … a struggle and not a concept." Nowadays the term appears in a broader range of contexts to refer to one's unspoken charm or allure.


Her performances were said to be spellbinding: by all accounts she was a singer possessed of such duende that the audience seemed a single organism unable to look away.

"[The flamenco performers] may achieve the rare quality of duende—total communication with their audience, and the mark of great flamenco of any style or generation." — The Rough Guide to Spain, 2015

Test Your Vocabulary

What noun has four z's and refers to the quality of being exciting or attractive?



More Words of the Day

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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