1. any art that invokes supernatural powers;
[syn: magic, thaumaturgy]
2. an illusory feat; considered magical by naive observers;
[syn: magic trick, conjuring trick, trick, magic, legerdemain, conjuration, thaumaturgy, illusion, deception]
1. possessing or using or characteristic of or appropriate to supernatural powers;
- Example: "charming incantations"
- Example: "magic signs that protect against adverse influence"
- Example: "a magical spell"
- Example: "'tis now the very witching time of night"- Shakespeare
- Example: "wizard wands"
- Example: "wizardly powers"
[syn: charming, magic, magical, sorcerous, witching(a), wizard(a), wizardly]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Magic \Mag"ic\, n. [OE. magique, L. magice, Gr. ? (sc. ?), fr. ?. See Magic, a., and Magi.] 1. A comprehensive name for all of the pretended arts which claim to produce effects by the assistance of supernatural beings, or departed spirits, or by a mastery of secret forces in nature attained by a study of occult science, including enchantment, conjuration, witchcraft, sorcery, necromancy, incantation, etc. [1913 Webster] An appearance made by some magic. --Chaucer. [1913 Webster] 2. The art of creating illusions which appear to the observer to be inexplicable except by some supernatural influence; it includes simple sleight of hand (legerdemain) as well as more elaborate stage magic, using special devices constructed to produce mystifying effects; as, the magic of David Copperfield. It is practised as an entertainment, by magicians who do not pretend to have supernatural powers. [PJC] Celestial magic, a supposed supernatural power which gave to spirits a kind of dominion over the planets, and to the planets an influence over men. Natural magic, the art of employing the powers of nature to produce effects apparently supernatural. Superstitious magic, or Geotic magic, the invocation of devils or demons, involving the supposition of some tacit or express agreement between them and human beings. [1913 Webster] Syn: Sorcery; witchcraft; necromancy; conjuration; enchantment. [1913 Webster] MagicThe Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Magic \Mag"ic\, Magical \Mag"ic*al\, a. [L. magicus, Gr. ?, fr. ?: cf. F. magique. See Magi.] 1. Pertaining to the hidden wisdom supposed to be possessed by the Magi; relating to the occult powers of nature, and the producing of effects by their agency. [1913 Webster] 2. Performed by, or proceeding from, occult and superhuman agencies; done by, or seemingly done by, enchantment or sorcery; as, a magical spell. Hence: Seemingly requiring more than human power; imposing or startling in performance; producing effects which seem supernatural or very extraordinary; having extraordinary properties; as, a magic lantern; a magic square or circle. [1913 Webster] The painter's magic skill. --Cowper. [1913 Webster] Note: Although with certain words magic is used more than magical, -- as, magic circle, magic square, magic wand, -- we may in general say magic or magical; as, a magic or magical effect; a magic or magical influence, etc. But when the adjective is predicative, magical, and not magic, is used; as, the effect was magical. [1913 Webster] Magic circle, a series of concentric circles containing the numbers 12 to 75 in eight radii, and having somewhat similar properties to the magic square. Magic humming bird (Zool.), a Mexican humming bird (Iache magica), having white downy thing tufts. Magic lantern. See Lantern. Magic square, numbers so disposed in parallel and equal rows in the form of a square, that each row, taken vertically, horizontally, or diagonally, shall give the same sum, the same product, or an harmonical series, according as the numbers taken are in arithmetical, geometrical, or harmonical progression. Magic wand, a wand used by a magician in performing feats of magic. [1913 Webster]The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (17 December 2009):
MAGIC An early system on the Midac computer. [Listed in CACM 2(5):16 (May 1959)]. [Jargon File] (1995-01-25)The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (17 December 2009):
magic 1. As yet unexplained, or too complicated to explain; compare automagically and (Arthur C.) Clarke's Third Law: Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. "TTY echoing is controlled by a large number of magic bits." "This routine magically computes the parity of an 8-bit byte in three instructions." 2. Characteristic of something that works although no one really understands why (this is especially called black magic). 3. (Stanford) A feature not generally publicised that allows something otherwise impossible or a feature formerly in that category but now unveiled. Compare wizardly, deep magic, heavy wizardry. For more about hackish "magic" see Magic Switch Story. 4. magic number. [Jargon File] (2001-03-19)The Jargon File (version 4.4.7, 29 Dec 2003):
magic 1. adj. As yet unexplained, or too complicated to explain; compare automagically and (Arthur C.) Clarke's Third Law: ?Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.? ?TTY echoing is controlled by a large number of magic bits.? ?This routine magically computes the parity of an 8-bit byte in three instructions.? 2. adj. Characteristic of something that works although no one really understands why (this is especially called black magic). 3. n. [Stanford] A feature not generally publicized that allows something otherwise impossible, or a feature formerly in that category but now unveiled. 4. n. The ultimate goal of all engineering & development, elegance in the extreme; from the first corollary to Clarke's Third Law: ?Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced?. Parodies playing on these senses of the term abound; some have made their way into serious documentation, as when a MAGIC directive was described in the Control Card Reference for GCOS c.1978. For more about hackish ?magic?, see Appendix A. Compare black magic, wizardly, deep magic, heavy wizardry.The Devil's Dictionary (1881-1906):
MAGIC, n. An art of converting superstition into coin. There are other arts serving the same high purpose, but the discreet lexicographer does not name them.Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary:
Magic The Jews seem early to have consulted the teraphim (q.v.) for oracular answers (Judg. 18:5, 6; Zech. 10:2). There is a remarkable illustration of this divining by teraphim in Ezek. 21:19-22. We read also of the divining cup of Joseph (Gen. 44:5). The magicians of Egypt are frequently referred to in the history of the Exodus. Magic was an inherent part of the ancient Egyptian religion, and entered largely into their daily life. All magical arts were distinctly prohibited under penalty of death in the Mosaic law. The Jews were commanded not to learn the "abomination" of the people of the Promised Land (Lev. 19:31; Deut. 18:9-14). The history of Saul's consulting the witch of Endor (1 Sam. 28:3-20) gives no warrant for attributing supernatural power to magicians. From the first the witch is here only a bystander. The practice of magic lingered among the people till after the Captivity, when they gradually abandoned it. It is not much referred to in the New Testament. The Magi mentioned in Matt. 2:1-12 were not magicians in the ordinary sense of the word. They belonged to a religious caste, the followers of Zoroaster, the astrologers of the East. Simon, a magician, was found by Philip at Samaria (Acts 8:9-24); and Paul and Barnabas encountered Elymas, a Jewish sorcerer, at Paphos (13:6-12). At Ephesus there was a great destruction of magical books (Acts 19:18, 19).Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:
135 Moby Thesaurus words for "magic": Prospero, abracadabra, airiness, alchemy, allure, allurement, appearance, augury, aura, bewitchery, bewitching, bewitchment, black art, black magic, blaze of glory, brilliance, brilliancy, charisma, charm, charming, conjuring, delusiveness, demonolatry, devilry, deviltry, diablerie, diabolism, divination, divining, enchanting, enchantment, ensorcellment, entrancing, envelope, exorcism, extraordinary, fallaciousness, false appearance, false light, false show, falseness, fascinating, fascination, fetishism, glamor, glamour, glory, gramarye, halo, hocus-pocus, hoodoo, hypnotic, idealization, illusion, illusionism, illusionist, illusiveness, illustriousness, immateriality, incantation, juju, jujuism, legerdemain, luster, magian, magic act, magic show, magical, magician, magnetic, magnetism, marvelous, mesmerizing, miraculous, mumbo-jumbo, mystic, mystique, natural magic, necromancy, necromantic, nimbus, numinousness, obeah, occult, occultism, prestidigitation, prodigious, radiance, remarkable, resplendence, resplendency, rune, satanism, seeming, semblance, shamanism, shamanistic, show, simulacrum, sleight of hand, soothsaying, sorcerer, sorcerous, sorcery, sortilege, specious appearance, spell, spellbinding, spellcasting, splendor, stupendous, sympathetic magic, thaumaturgia, thaumaturgics, thaumaturgism, thaumaturgy, theurgy, trickery, unactuality, unbelievable, unprecedented, unreality, unsubstantiality, vampirism, voodoo, voodooism, wanga, white magic, witchcraft, witchery, witching, witchwork, witchy, wizardly, wizardry