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numinous

[noo-muh-nuh s, nyoo-] /ˈnu mə nəs, ˈnyu-/
adjective
1.
of, pertaining to, or like a numen; spiritual or supernatural.
2.
surpassing comprehension or understanding; mysterious:
that element in artistic expression that remains numinous.
3.
arousing one's elevated feelings of duty, honor, loyalty, etc.:
a benevolent and numinous paternity.
Origin
1640-1650
1640-50; < Latin nūmin- (stem of nūmen) numen + -ous
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for numinous
  • If you have had a numinous experience, maybe you don't have to go find the being who provided it.
  • Teetering tantalizingly between the numinous and the decorative, they make you wonder what he'll do next.
  • The mystery behind her numinous persona has never ceased to captivate audiences.
  • It moves him out of desperation toward the numinous.
  • For millennia it has held various meanings, many of them numinous.
  • The belief that in madness there may exist a core of numinous knowledge is a commonplace in all human societies.
  • But even the many defeats and fiascoes and dishonors added in some numinous way to his stature.
  • But some of us take this numinous reverence and express it through our metaphorical and poetic religious traditions.
British Dictionary definitions for numinous

numinous

/ˈnjuːmɪnəs/
adjective
1.
denoting, being, or relating to a numen; divine
2.
arousing spiritual or religious emotions
3.
mysterious or awe-inspiring
Word Origin
C17: from Latin numin-,numen + -ous
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 numinous
adj.

"divine, spiritual," 1640s, from Latin numen (genitive numinis) "divine will," properly "divine approval expressed by nodding the head," from nuere "to nod," from PIE *neu- "to nod" (cf. Greek neuein "to nod") + -ous.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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