Saturday, 21 April 2012

Entry: apotropaic (adj.)

In context: "'I suddenly understand the gesundheit-impulse, the salt over the shoulder and apotropaic barn-signs."

Definition:   Having or reputed to have the power of averting evil influence or ill luck.

Other:Neat word!

Etymology:  < Greek ἀποτρόπαιος averting evil ( < ἀποτρέπειν to turn away, avert) + -ic suffix

1904   W. M. Ramsay in Hastings Dict. Bible V. 115/1   The‥employment of a bull's head on‥sarcophagi‥evidently‥had at first an apotropaic purpose.

SNOOT score: 3

Source: Oxford English Dictionary

No comments:

Post a Comment