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afflatus

[uh-fley-tuh s] /əˈfleɪ təs/
noun
1.
inspiration; an impelling mental force acting from within.
2.
divine communication of knowledge.
Origin of afflatus
1655-1665
1655-65; < Latin afflātus a breathing on, equivalent to af- af- + flā- (stem of flāre to blow2) + -tus suffix of v. action
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for afflatus
Historical Examples
  • And that afflatus was no such great matter, either: afflatuses should not promise more than they mean to perform.

  • Metre and rhyme, I grant you—long and short—but show me the afflatus!

    Miriam Monfort Catherine A. Warfield
  • He was not born to an inheritance of sycophancy; it comes like an afflatus upon him, and it turns his head.

  • Then with an afflatus, words flow, whispered by my muse, into lines and stanzas.

    Dreaming of Dreaming Peter E. Williams
  • The afflatus thus acquired, its effects become visible in the frantic glare and the convulsive gesticulations of the possessed.

    Ten Thousand Wonderful Things Edmund Fillingham King
  • At this point, inspired by the afflatus of a deep and true affection, Philip waxed eloquent.

    Nestleton Magna J. Jackson Wray
  • It seems to spread out its wings and to be lifted straight upwards out of sight by the afflatus of its own happy heart.

  • The Dial was the original organ of this afflatus, and contains many articles that are edifying to Christians of good digestion.

    History of American Socialisms John Humphrey Noyes
  • When once she abandoned herself to the afflatus of the dance delirium, she did with her beholders what she would.

    Under Two Flags Ouida [Louise de la Ramee]
  • After his deposal and death there was a long interregnum; but the afflatus was only distributed, not extinguished.

    History of American Socialisms John Humphrey Noyes
British Dictionary definitions for afflatus

afflatus

/əˈfleɪtəs/
noun
1.
an impulse of creative power or inspiration, esp in poetry, considered to be of divine origin (esp in the phrase divine afflatus)
Word Origin
C17: Latin, from afflātus, from afflāre to breathe or blow on, from flāre to blow
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for afflatus
n.

"miraculous communication of supernatural knowledge," 1660s, from Latin afflatus "a breathing upon, blast," from past participle of afflare "to blow upon," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + flare "to blow" (see blow (v.1)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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