the act or phenomenon of levitating.
the raising or rising of a body in air by supernatural means.

1660–70; levitate + -ion

levitational, adjective
levitative, adjective
self-levitation, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To levitation
World English Dictionary
levitate (ˈlɛvɪˌteɪt)
1.  to rise or cause to rise and float in the air, without visible agency, attributed, esp formerly, to supernatural causes
2.  (tr) med to support (a patient) on a cushion of air in the treatment of severe burns
[C17: from Latin levis light + -tate, as in gravitate]

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

1660s; see levitate.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Britannica


rising of a human body off the ground, in apparent defiance of the law of gravity. The term designates such alleged occurrences in the lives of saints and of spiritualist mediums, generally during a seance; levitation of furniture and other objects during a seance has also been reported. Levitation of witches and other figures of folklore is called transvection and is said to involve the rubbing of "flying ointment" on their bodies before flying to the sabbath (see witches' sabbath). The levitation of saints is usually directly upward, whereas that of witches has the dynamic purpose of transportation. Theologians long debated whether transvection was illusion or fact; levitation, however, has been subject to less controversy, though its practice has often been discouraged.

Learn more about levitation with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
It could thus present an alternative to much more expensive magnetic-levitation trains.
The same magnitude in employment may bring the construction of the magnetic
  levitation train network.
Likewise, certain cultures incorporate levitation myths.
Lately he has been experimenting with food levitation.
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature