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allusion

[ uh-loo-zhuhn ]
/ əˈlu ʒən /
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See synonyms for: allusion / allusions on Thesaurus.com

noun

a passing or casual reference; an incidental mention of something, either directly or by implication: The novel's title is an allusion to Shakespeare.
the act of alluding; the making of a casual or indirect reference to something: The Bible is a fertile source of allusion in art.
Obsolete. a metaphor or parable.

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Origin of allusion

First recorded in 1540–50; Late Latin allūsiōn- (stem of allūsiō ), equivalent to allūs(us), past participle of allūdere (see allude; al- + lūd- “play” + -tus past participle suffix) + -iōn- -ion

OTHER WORDS FROM allusion

pre·al·lu·sion, noun

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH allusion

1. allusion , reference2. allusion , elusion, illusion
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for allusion

British Dictionary definitions for allusion

allusion
/ (əˈluːʒən) /

noun

the act of alluding
a passing reference; oblique or obscure mention

Word Origin for allusion

C16: from Late Latin allūsiō, from Latin allūdere to sport with, allude
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

Cultural definitions for allusion

allusion

An indirect reference to some piece of knowledge not actually mentioned. Allusions usually come from a body of information that the author presumes the reader will know. For example, an author who writes, “She was another Helen,” is alluding to the proverbial beauty of Helen of Troy.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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