noun, plural voodoos.
Also, vodun. a polytheistic religion practiced chiefly by West Indians, deriving principally from African cult worship and containing elements borrowed from the Catholic religion.
a person who practices this religion.
a fetish or other object of voodoo worship.
a group of magical and ecstatic rites associated with voodoo.
(not in technical use) black magic; sorcery.
of, pertaining to, associated with, or practicing voodoo.
Informal: Usually Disparaging. characterized by deceptively simple, almost magical, solutions or ideas: voodoo politics.
verb (used with object), voodooed, voodooing.
to affect by voodoo sorcery.

1810–20, Americanism; < Louisiana French, earlier vandoux, vandoo < a West African source perhaps akin to Ewe vodũ demon

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World English Dictionary
voodoo (ˈvuːduː)
n , 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
4.  relating to or associated with voodoo
vb , -doos, -doos, -dooing, -dooed
5.  (tr) to affect by or as if by the power of voodoo
[C19: from Louisiana French voudou, ultimately of West African origin; compare Ewe vodu guardian spirit]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

religious witchcraft of Haiti and Southern U.S., ult. of African origin, 1850, from Louisiana Fr. 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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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

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
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