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[hur-met-ik] /hɜrˈmɛt ɪk/
made airtight by fusion or sealing.
not affected by outward influence or power; isolated.
(sometimes initial capital letter) of, relating to, or characteristic of occult science, especially alchemy.
(initial capital letter) of or relating to Hermes Trismegistus or the writings ascribed to him.
Also, hermetical.
Origin of hermetic
1630-40; < Medieval Latin hermēticus of, pertaining to Hermes Trismegistus, equivalent to Latin Hermē(s) Hermes + -ticus -tic
Related forms
unhermetic, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for hermetic
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It amounted to a surgical replacement of one hermetic elite by another.

    After the Rain Sam Vaknin
  • Detailed exposition of the hermetic writings will here be impossible.

    The Origin of Paul's Religion J. Gresham Machen
  • Certainly it is not so used ordinarily in the hermetic writings.

    The Origin of Paul's Religion J. Gresham Machen
  • “The priests must be hiding the hermetic wisdom on purpose,” said Lucius.

    The Tour Louis Couperus
  • At that time Paris was the centre of the hermetic science in France.

    L-bas J. K. Huysmans
  • From his early youth, he delighted in the visions of the hermetic science.

  • Behind them, the huge inverted bowl of the city glowed in hermetic splendor.

    Rich Living Michael Cathal
British Dictionary definitions for hermetic


sealed so as to be airtight
hidden or protected from the outside world
Derived Forms
hermetically, adverb
Word Origin
C17: from Medieval Latin hermēticus belonging to Hermes Trismegistus, traditionally the inventor of a magic seal


of or relating to Hermes Trismegistus or the writings and teachings ascribed to him
of or relating to ancient science, esp alchemy
esoteric or recondite
Word Origin
see hermetic
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
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Word Origin and History for hermetic

c.1600 (implied in hermetically), "completely sealed," also (1630s) "dealing with occult science or alchemy," from Latin hermeticus, from Greek Hermes, god of science and art, among other things, identified by Neoplatonists, mystics, and alchemists with the Egyptian god Thoth as Hermes Trismegistos "Thrice-Great Hermes," who supposedly invented the process of making a glass tube airtight (a process in alchemy) using a secret seal.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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hermetic in Medicine

hermetic her·met·ic (hər-mět'ĭk) or her·met·i·cal (-ĭ-kəl)
Completely sealed, especially against the escape or entry of air.

her·met'i·cal·ly adv.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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