noun, plural arcana [ahr-key-nuh] .
Often, arcana. a secret; mystery.
a supposed great secret of nature that the alchemists sought to discover.
a secret and powerful remedy.

1590–1600; < Latin, neuter (used as noun) of arcānus arcane Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To Arcana
World English Dictionary
arcana (ɑːˈkeɪnə, -ˈkɑː-)
either of the two divisions (the minor arcana and the major arcana) of a pack of tarot cards

arcanum (ɑːˈkeɪnəm)
n , pl -na
1.  (sometimes plural) a profound secret or mystery known only to initiates
2.  a secret of nature sought by alchemists
[C16: from Latin; see arcane]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

"hidden things," 1590s, a direct adoption from Latin of plural of arcanum, from L. neut. of adj. arcanus "secret, hidden" (see arcane). Occasionally mistaken for a singular and pluralized as arcanas since arcana is far more common than arcanum.

proper singular form of arcana (q.v.).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature