abraxas

[uh-brak-suh s]

noun

a word of unknown significance found on charms, especially amulets, of the late Greco-Roman world and linked with both Gnostic beliefs and magical practices by the early church fathers.

Origin of abraxas

From the Greek word abráxas, abrasáx, of obscure origin; the combined numerical value of the Gk letters is 365, an important figure in numerology
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British Dictionary definitions for abraxas

abraxas

abrasax (əˈbræsəks)

noun

an ancient charm composed of Greek letters: originally believed to have magical powers and inscribed on amulets, etc, but from the second century ad personified by Gnostics as a deity, the source of divine emanations

Word Origin for abraxas

from Greek: invented word
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 abraxas

Cabalistic word, 1738, of uncertain origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper