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bewitch

[bih-wich]
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verb (used with object)
  1. to affect by witchcraft or magic; cast a spell over.
  2. to enchant; charm; fascinate: The painter bewitched the crowd with his latest work.
verb (used without object)
  1. to cause someone to be enchanted; cast a spell over someone: She lost her power to bewitch.

Origin of bewitch

First recorded in 1175–1225, bewitch is from the Middle English word biwicchen. See be-, witch
Related formsbe·witch·er, nounbe·witch·er·y, nounbe·witch·ing·ness, nounbe·witch·ment, nounun·be·witched, adjective

Synonyms

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2. captivate, enrapture, transport.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for bewitchment

Historical Examples

  • May the bewitchment through the charm of Ea be peeled off like an onion.

    The Religion of Babylonia and Assyria

    Morris Jastrow

  • It was my Father's Bewitchment that made the only real trouble.

    Fairy Prince and Other Stories

    Eleanor Hallowell Abbott

  • She became an innocent siren, studying ways of bewitchment, of endearment.

  • The ritual set forth water as a purification for some bewitchment.

  • I cannot promise more than that, now can I, for any bewitchment?

    Perlycross

    R. D. Blackmore


British Dictionary definitions for bewitchment

bewitch

verb (tr)
  1. to attract and fascinate; enchant
  2. to cast a spell over
Derived Formsbewitching, adjectivebewitchingly, adverb

Word Origin

C13 bewicchen; see be-, witch
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

Word Origin and History for bewitchment

bewitch

v.

c.1200, biwicchen, from be- + Old English wiccian "to enchant, to practice witchcraft" (see witch). Literal at first, figurative sense of "to fascinate" is from 1520s. *Bewiccian may well have existed in Old English, but it is not attested. Related: Bewitched; bewitching; bewitchingly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper