witch-craft

witchcraft

[wich-kraft, -krahft]
noun
1.
the art or practices of a witch; sorcery; magic.
2.
magical influence; witchery.

Origin:
before 950; Middle English wicchecraft, Old English wiccecræft. See witch, craft


1. See magic.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To witch-craft
Collins
World English Dictionary
witchcraft (ˈwɪtʃˌkrɑːft)
 
n
1.  the art or power of bringing magical or preternatural power to bear or the act or practice of attempting to do so
2.  the influence of magic or sorcery
3.  fascinating or bewitching influence or charm

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
Etymonline
Word Origin & History

witchcraft
O.E. wiccecræft, from wicce (see witch) + cræft "power, skill" (see craft). Witchcraft was first declared a crime in Eng. law in 1542; trials there peaked in 1580s and 1640s but fell sharply after 1660. The last, in 1717, ended in acquittal. The Witchcraft Act was repealed 1736.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

witchcraft definition


Popularly believed to be the practice of black magic. Witches are known today as followers of Wicca, a pagan nature religion with roots in pre-Christian western Europe. Wicca is now undergoing a revival, especially in the United States and Great Britain.

Note: Old misunderstandings and hysterical accusations have led to persecution of “witches,” most famously in the Salem witch trials of 1692.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Easton
Bible Dictionary

Witchcraft definition


(1 Sam. 15:23; 2 Kings 9:22; 2 Chr. 33:6; Micah 5:12; Nahum 3:4; Gal. 5:20). In the popular sense of the word no mention is made either of witches or of witchcraft in Scripture. The "witch of En-dor" (1 Sam. 28) was a necromancer, i.e., one who feigned to hold converse with the dead. The damsel with "a spirit of divination" (Acts 16:16) was possessed by an evil spirit, or, as the words are literally rendered, "having a spirit, a pithon." The reference is to the heathen god Apollo, who was regarded as the god of prophecy.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature