• synonyms


[noo-muh-nuh, nyoo-]
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  1. plural of numen.
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[noo-min, nyoo-]
noun, plural nu·mi·na [noo-muh-nuh, nyoo-] /ˈnu mə nə, ˈnyu-/.
  1. divine power or spirit; a deity, especially one presiding locally or believed to inhabit a particular object.
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Origin of numen

1620–30; < Latin nūmen a nod, command, divine will or power, divinity; akin to nūtāre to nod the head in commanding or assent
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for numina

accomplishment, endowment, ability, acquirement, bent, attribute, set, capacity, genius, propensity, head, power, specialty, attainment, faculty, instinct, forte, knack, aptness, capability

Examples from the Web for numina

Historical Examples of numina

  • The gods are nomina and not numina, names without being and not beings without name.

    The Elementary Forms of the Religious Life

    Emile Durkheim

  • Within the family every act, every relation, was matter of religion; the numina had to be considered in regard to it.

  • Somnia qua mentes ludunt volitantibus umbris,Non delumbra deum nec ab there numina mittunt,Sed sibi quisque facit.

    A Philosophical Dictionary, Volume 9 (of 10)

    Franois-Marie Arouet (AKA Voltaire)

  • The ideas are simpler, the numina seem less cold and more protective, the worshippers more sensible of divine aid.

British Dictionary definitions for numina


  1. the plural of numen
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noun plural -mina (-mɪnə)
  1. (esp in ancient Roman religion) a deity or spirit presiding over a thing or place
  2. a guiding principle, force, or spirit
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Word Origin for numen

C17: from Latin: a nod (indicating a command), divine power; compare nuere to nod
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 numina



"divine spirit, presiding divinity," 1620s, from Latin numen "divine will, divinity," literally "a nod," from nuere "to nod" (assent); see numinous.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper