[ maj-ik ]
See synonyms for magic on
  1. the art of producing illusions as entertainment by the use of sleight of hand, deceptive devices, etc.; legerdemain; conjuring: to pull a rabbit out of a hat by magic.

  2. the art of producing a desired effect or result through the use of incantation or various other techniques that presumably assure human control of supernatural agencies or the forces of nature.: Compare contagious magic, imitative magic, sympathetic magic.

  1. the use of this art: Magic, it was believed, could drive illness from the body.

  2. the effects produced: the magic of recovery.

  3. power or influence exerted through this art: a wizard of great magic.

  4. any extraordinary or mystical influence, charm, power, etc.: the magic in a great name;the magic of music;the magic of spring.

  5. (initial capital letter) the U.S. code name for information from decrypting machine-enciphered Japanese wireless messages before and during World War II.

  1. employed in magic: magic spells;magic dances;magic rites.

  2. mysteriously enchanting; magical: magic beauty.

  1. of, relating to, or due to magic.

  2. producing the effects of magic; magical: a magic touch.

verb (used with object),mag·icked, mag·ick·ing.
  1. to create, transform, move, etc., by or as if by magic: I magicked him into a medieval knight.

Origin of magic

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English magik(e) “witchcraft,” from Late Latin magica, Latin magicē, from Greek magikḗ, noun use of feminine of magikós “magical”; see Magus, -ic

synonym study For magic

2. Magic, necromancy, sorcery, witchcraft imply producing results through mysterious influences or unexplained powers. Magic may have glamorous and attractive connotations; the other terms suggest the harmful and sinister. Magic is an art employing some occult force of nature: A hundred years ago television would have seemed to be magic. Necromancy is an art of prediction based on alleged communication with the dead (it is called “the black art,” because Greek nekrós, dead, was confused with Latin niger, black): Necromancy led to violating graves. Sorcery, originally divination by casting lots, came to mean supernatural knowledge gained through the aid of evil spirits, and often used for evil ends: spells and charms used in sorcery. Witchcraft especially suggests a malign kind of magic, often used against innocent victims: Those accused of witchcraft were executed.

Other words for magic

Other words from magic

  • quasi-magic, adjective

Words Nearby magic Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use magic in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for magic


/ (ˈmædʒɪk) /

  1. the art that, by use of spells, supposedly invokes supernatural powers to influence events; sorcery

  2. the practice of this art

  1. the practice of illusory tricks to entertain other people; conjuring

  2. any mysterious or extraordinary quality or power: the magic of springtime

  3. like magic very quickly

adjectiveAlso: magical
  1. of or relating to magic: a magic spell

  2. possessing or considered to possess mysterious powers: a magic wand

  1. unaccountably enchanting: magic beauty

  2. informal wonderful; marvellous; exciting

verb-ics, -icking or -icked (tr)
  1. to transform or produce by or as if by magic

  2. (foll by away) to cause to disappear by or as if by magic

Origin of magic

C14: via Old French magique, from Greek magikē witchcraft, from magos magus

Derived forms of magic

  • magical, adjective
  • magically, adverb

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