- a person who completely dominates another, usually with selfish or sinister motives.
Origin of Svengali
Examples from the Web for svengali
Contemporary Examples of svengali
But one look at the film is enough to dispel all notions of Svengali.The Legend With The Look: Remembering Lauren Bacall
August 13, 2014
Well, he was no Svengali, no alchemist and, obviously, they would have happened without him.What It Was Like to Watch the Beatles Become the Beatles—Nik Cohn Remembers
February 9, 2014
Historical Examples of svengali
Nobody knew exactly how Svengali lived, and very few knew where (or why).
He forgets that there's a fellow called Svengali for the world to talk about!
His touch on either canvas or paper was like Svengali's on the key-board—unique.
But Svengali merely turned round and bowed—there were to be no encores that night.
She stared at him with a cold stare of disdain, and cut him dead—so did Svengali.
- a person who controls another's mind, usually with sinister intentions
Word Origin for Svengali
"one who exerts controlling or mesmeric influence on another," 1914, from hypnotist character of that name in the novel "Trilby" (1894) by George Du Maurier.