• synonyms


  1. a delusion in which one imagines oneself to be a wolf or other wild animal.
  2. the supposed or fabled assumption of the appearance of a wolf by a human being.
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Origin of lycanthropy

From the Greek word lykanthrōpía, dating back to 1575–85. See lycanthrope, -y3
Related formsly·can·throp·ic [lahy-kuh n-throp-ik] /ˌlaɪ kənˈθrɒp ɪk/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for lycanthropy

Historical Examples of lycanthropy

British Dictionary definitions for lycanthropy


  1. the supposed magical transformation of a person into a wolf
  2. psychiatry a delusion in which a person believes that he is a wolf
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Derived Formslycanthropic (ˌlaɪkənˈθrɒpɪk), adjective

Word Origin for lycanthropy

C16: from Greek lukānthropía, from lukos wolf + anthrōpos man
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 lycanthropy


1580s, a form of madness (described by ancient writers) in which the afflicted thought he was a wolf, from Greek lykanthropia, from lykanthropos "wolf-man," from lykos "wolf" (see wolf (n.)) + anthropos "man" (see anthropo-). Originally a form of madness (described by ancient writers) in which the afflicted thought he was a wolf; applied to actual transformations of persons (especially witches) into wolves since 1830 (see werewolf).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

lycanthropy in Medicine


  1. The delusion that one is a wolf.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.