Dictionary.com

fetish

or fet·ich

[ fet-ish, fee-tish ]
/ ˈfɛt ɪʃ, ˈfi tɪʃ /
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noun

an object regarded with awe as being the embodiment or habitation of a potent spirit or as having magical potency.
any object, idea, etc., eliciting unquestioning reverence, respect, or devotion: to make a fetish of high grades.
Psychology. any object or nongenital part of the body that causes a habitual erotic response or fixation.

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Origin of fetish

1605–15; earlier fateish<Portuguese feitiço charm, sorcery (noun), artificial (adj.) <Latin factīciusfactitious; replacing fatisso, fetisso<Portuguese, as above
fet·ish·like, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for fetish

fetish

fetich

/ (ˈfɛtɪʃ, ˈfiːtɪʃ) /

noun

something, esp an inanimate object, that is believed in certain cultures to be the embodiment or habitation of a spirit or magical powers
  1. a form of behaviour involving fetishism
  2. any object that is involved in fetishism
any object, activity, etc, to which one is excessively or irrationally devotedto make a fetish of cleanliness
fetish-like or fetich-like, adjective
C17: from French fétiche, from Portuguese feitiço (n) sorcery, from adj: artificial, from Latin factīcius made by art, factitious
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

Medical definitions for fetish

fetish
[ fĕtĭsh, fētĭsh ]

n.

Something, such as an object or nonsexual part of the body, that arouses sexual desire and may become necessary for sexual gratification.
An abnormally obsessive preoccupation or attachment.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Cultural definitions for fetish

fetish

An object believed to carry a magical or spiritual force. Some so-called primitive tribes practice cult worship of fetishes. (See animism (see also animism) and totemism.)

Figuratively, a “fetish” is any object that arouses excessive devotion: “Lucille made a fetish of her Porsche.”
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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