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voodoo

[voo-doo] /ˈvu du/
noun, plural voodoos.
1.
Also, vodun. a polytheistic religion practiced chiefly by West Indians, deriving principally from African cult worship and containing elements borrowed from the Catholic religion.
2.
a person who practices this religion.
3.
a fetish or other object of voodoo worship.
4.
a group of magical and ecstatic rites associated with voodoo.
5.
(not in technical use) black magic; sorcery.
adjective
6.
of, pertaining to, associated with, or practicing voodoo.
7.
Informal: Usually Disparaging. characterized by deceptively simple, almost magical, solutions or ideas:
voodoo politics.
verb (used with object), voodooed, voodooing.
8.
to affect by voodoo sorcery.
Origin
1810-1820
1810-20, Americanism; < Louisiana French, earlier vandoux, vandoo < a West African source perhaps akin to Ewe vodũ demon
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for voodoo
  • Simply put, voodoo is a religion, whereas hoodoo is a group of magic.
British Dictionary definitions for voodoo

voodoo

/ˈvuːduː/
noun (pl) -doos
1.
Also called voodooism. a religious cult involving witchcraft and communication by trance with ancestors and animistic deities, common in Haiti and other Caribbean islands
2.
a person who practises voodoo
3.
a charm, spell, or fetish involved in voodoo worship and ritual
adjective
4.
relating to or associated with voodoo
verb -doos, -dooing, -dooed
5.
(transitive) to affect by or as if by the power of voodoo
Derived Forms
voodooist, noun
voodooistic, adjective
Word Origin
C19: from Louisiana French voudou, ultimately of West African origin; compare Ewe vodu guardian spirit
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 voodoo
n.

religious witchcraft of Haiti and Southern U.S., ultimately of African origin, 1850, from Louisiana French voudou, from a W.African language (e.g. Ewe and Fon vodu "spirit, demon, deity," also Vandoo, supposedly the name of an African deity, from a language of Dahomey). Cf. vodun "fetish connected with snake worship in Dahomey," said to be from vo "to be afraid," or vo "harmful." The verb is attested from 1880.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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voodoo in Culture

voodoo definition


A form of animism involving trances and other rituals. Communication with the dead is a principal feature of voodoo. It is most common in the nations of the Caribbean Sea, especially Haiti, where people sometimes mingle voodoo and Christian practices.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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