ecstatic joy or delight; joyful ecstasy.
Often raptures. an utterance or expression of ecstatic delight.
the carrying of a person to another place or sphere of existence.
the Rapture, Theology. the experience, anticipated by some fundamentalist Christians, of meeting Christ midway in the air upon his return to earth.
Archaic. the act of carrying off.

verb (used with object), rap·tured, rap·tur·ing.

Origin of rapture

First recorded in 1590–1600; rapt + -ure
Related formsrap·ture·less, adjective
Can be confusedrapture rupture

Synonyms for rapture

Synonym study

1. See ecstasy.

Antonyms for rapture

1. misery.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

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British Dictionary definitions for rapture



the state of mind resulting from feelings of high emotion; joyous ecstasy
(often plural) an expression of ecstatic joy
the act of transporting a person from one sphere of existence to another, esp from earth to heaven


(tr) archaic, or literary to entrance; enrapture

Word Origin for rapture

C17: from Medieval Latin raptūra, from Latin raptus rapt 1
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 rapture

c.1600, "act of carrying off," from Middle French rapture, from Medieval Latin raptura "seizure, rape, kidnapping," from Latin raptus "a carrying off, abduction, snatching away; rape" (see rapt). Earliest attested use in English is of women and in 17c. it sometimes meant rape (v.), which word is a cognate of this. Sense of "spiritual ecstasy, state of mental transport" first recorded c.1600 (raptures).


1630s, from rapture (n.). Related: Raptured; rapturing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper