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Magical Lexicon A – C

  Term Meaning & Etymology
Term Abracadabra An incantation or Magic Word which, when inscribed upon an amulet (especially in the form of a triangle with the word on one row and 10 additional rows, each of the word less one letter so that on the eleventh row the letter ‘A’ appears alone) will ward off disease; first used by physician Serenus Sammonicus as a prescription for Roman emperor Caracella; often used as a Magic Word in Stage Magic
Source Rome
Part of Speech N.
Function Magic Word
Term Accursed From Dictionary.com: “Under a Curse, Doomed, Ill-fated; Damnable, Detestable”; often used to refer to something enchanted with Black Magic – a curse or a hex – for an evil purpose.  The word is often pronounced without a silent ‘e’, as in “uh-CUR-sehd”.
Source Old English
Part of Speech Adj.
Function Action/Effect
Term Adamic The language spoken by Adam in the Garden of Eden to name all things.  According to some traditions, this is also the language of God, or of the Angels.  According to other traditions, it is Hebrew, or a precursor to Hebrew.  Conceptually, it is linked to certain magic systems in which knowing the True Name of a thing grants mystical power over that thing.
Source Judeo-Christian
Part of Speech N.
Function Magic Word
Term Adept From Dictionary.com: “A skilled or proficient person, an expert”; used to refer to someone who is very skilled in magic; contrasts with Novice or Novitiate. (Can also be used in a adjective form to describe someone who is skilled or proficient.)
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Aeromancy From Greek “Aer” meaning “Air” + “-mancy” from “manteia” meaning “Divination”; Aeromancy is Divination by means of observing atmospheric conditions, such as Austromancy, Cerunoscopy, Chaomancy, Nephomancy, and Meteormancy.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Aether An alternate spelling of Ether; in Greek Mythology, the personification or deity of the upper sky, above the breathable atmosphere; Later, developed as one of the Classical Elements, becoming the Fifth Element, contrasting with the other four by being more fine or more pure, and the essence from which the other four were made; later assumed to be the medium through which Light travels (called Luminiferous Aether).
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Power Source
Term Air One of the Classical Elements, higher in form than Water but lower in form than Fire.  It is cooler and wetter than fire, but warmer and dryer than earth or water.  Air seems representative of movement (due to the tendancy of winds to constantly be moving) and is also one of the principle components in Mists, Fogs, Clouds, and Gases.  Air seems intimately linked to Life (due to all living things “breathing”) as well as to the spirit or animating life force of people (perhaps related to the Biblical link between the “Breath of Life” and the “Spirit of Man”).  According to the work of Paracelsus, the Elemental of Air is called a Sylph.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Power Source
Term Ajna The sixth Chakra, positioned near the eyebrow, in the place of the Third Eye.  It is represented by two white petals.  Ajna relates to Psychic ability, or the power of the Mind, linking it also to Dreams.  The word Ajna means “command”. 
Source Hindu
Part of Speech N.
Function Power Source
Term Alchemist A practitioner of Alchemy
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Alchemy From Greek “Khemia” (the art of Transmuting Metals) via French “Alkemie”; Alchemy is the art, or medieval science, of Transmuting metals.  Its practitioners are called Alchemists.  It was particularly concerned with finding a way to change “baser” metals into gold.  Alchemists also attempted to discover the “Elixir of Life”, a substance that could cure any disease and prolong life, granting immortality as well as the “Universal Solvent”, a substance that could dissolve any material.  This “Universal Solvent” was important to the other areas of Alchemical endeavour because it would allow the Alchemists to decompose any matter into its basest elements and then to reassemble those elements into the desired material.  This is the Alchemical principle of “Separate and Join” or “Dissolve and Coagulate”.  Alchemy was originally practiced by the Roman, Greeks, Egyptians, Persians, Mesopotamians, Indians and Chinese before it became a pseudoscientific discipline in Medieval Europe.  It has also been described as a Spiritual Philosophy.  One of the primary pursuits of Alchemy was the discovery of the Philosopher’s Stone, considered to be the principle ingredient necessary to obtain all other goals of the Alchemist.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Alchemy A magic system based on the historic concept of Alchemy, here based on the principle of “Equivalent Exchange” wherein to obtain something of value, something of equal value must be obtained.  A primary plot element of the story is the search for the “Philosopher’s Stone” which would allow an alchemist to forgo the Law of Equivalent Exchange.  A recurring motif is the Ouroborus and circles, representing the cyclical or circular nature of alchemy.
Source Fullmetal Alchemist
Part of Speech N.
Function Fictional System
Term Alomancy From Greek “Halo” meaning “salt” + “-mancy” from “manteia” meaning “Divination”; Divination by casting salt crystals and interpretting the pattern as it falls to the ground or travels through the air.  May also be called Adromancy, Ydromancie, Idromancie, and Halomancy.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Allomancy Not to be confused with Alomancy; Allomancy is the magic system devised by author Brandon Sanderson in the Mistborn series in which practitioners (Allomancers) “burn” various metals that they have ingested to produce various magical effects.  Different metals are associated with different magical effects.  Once “burned” an ingested metal will no longer be efficacious, so more of the metal will need to be ingested to produce further effects. 
Source Mistborn Series
Part of Speech N.
Function Fictional System
Term Amulet From Latin “Amuletum”; From Wikipedia: an Amulet is “an object that protects a person from trouble”.  It can refer to any ritualistic object intended to ward off evil or protect from harm, but most typically refers to an object that is worn, such as jewelry or a necklace.  An amulet derives its power from some magical practice, such as a ritualistic prayer over the object, a sacred inscription on the object, or a magical symbol engraved in it, among other possibilities.
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Artifact
Term Anahata The fourth Chakra, positioned near the heart.  It is represented by a green flower with twelve petals.  Anahata relates to the ability to make decisions outside of “karma”, or in other words, making decisions not bound by baser desires but on the desires of the “higher self”, or “following the heart”.
Source Hindu
Part of Speech N.
Function Power Source
Term Angel From Greek “Angelos” meaning “Messenger” and especially “Messenger of God”; Angels are a class of spiritual beings, seen as the attendants of God in Heaven or messengers from God.  As such, Angels are often considered semi-divine, and may be capable of magical or magic-like effects.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Creature
Term Angelic From Greek “Angelos” meaning “Messenger” and especially “Messenger of God”; Being like an Angel or having the qualities of an Angel.
Source Greek
Part of Speech Adj.
Function Descriptive
Term Arcane Magic A system of Magic in which power is gained by learning hidden or mysterious secrets.  Arcane Magic requires rigorous study and/or memorization, and often requires implements, reagents, magic words, or other objects or knowledge that is rare, exotic, or difficult to understand or master.  An example might be the system of magic used in Vance’s “Dying Earth” stories, which requires spell memorization, or the same system, borrowed and adapted, for the Dungeons & Dragons roleplaying game.
Source Fantasy Fiction
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Archimage An alternate, rare spelling of Archmage
Source Fantasy Fiction
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Archmage A neologism utilizing the Greek roots “Arche”, meaning “First” and “Magus”, a Greek term for a member of a learned, Priestly caste, especially in Persia and Medea.  Used frequently in fantasy literature and fantasy gaming to refer to a powerful practitioner of the magical arts.  The first known use of the term, of which I am aware, is in Ursula K. LeGuin’s “A Wizard of Earthsea” books.
Source A Wizard of Earthsea
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Archmagi An alternate spelling of Archmage; the Latinized plural of Archmagus
Source Fantasy Fiction
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Archmagus An alternate spelling of Archmage
Source Fantasy Fiction
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Artifact From Latin “Arte Factum” or “Something Made with Skill”; In a magic system, an Artifact can often refer to something that is made with magic, or an object that has a magical aura.  In some systems, the word “Artifact” most often refers to an ancient and very powerful magical object.  This most probably is related to the use of the word in archeology to mean an object made (and later found again) by humans, and in that context most often referring to ancient objects used by ancient humans that have been unearthed by archeologists.
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Artifact
Term Artifice From Latin “Artificium” from “Artifex” = “ars/art-” + “facere”, meaning “To Make Art” or “To Make with Skill”; From Miriam-Webster Online: “Clever or Artful Skill; an ingenious device or expedient”; A word that can refer to the skill, ingenuity or craft of magic; especially may refer to artifacts or magical objects created by a magic user
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Descriptive
Term Artificer Related to the word “artifice” meaning “artful skill”; from Dictionary.com: “A person who is skillful or clever in devising ways of making things; inventor”; in some magic systems, a maker of magical objects or objects of power.
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Astrologer A practitioner of Astrology; Someone who studies the placement and orientation of certain celestial bodies at the time of an event in order to interpret things about that event; typically focused on the Horoscope of a person’s birth to interpret things about that person’s life.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Astrology From Greek “Astro” meaning “star” and “Logia” meaning “Study”; a system of beliefs that holds that the position of celestial bodies, such as the sun, moon, and stars, can reveal certain information about human affairs or terrestrial matters, particularly future events and human personalities.  Astrology is usually considered a type of Divination.  The practice and study of Astrology goes back thousands of years to ancient Mesopotamian times.  In ancient times, Astrology and Astronomy (the modern science of the study of the planets, stars, and other heavenly objects) were effectively the same discipline.  Astrology is predicated upon the idea that the orientation of celestial bodies at the time of a person’s birth is auspicious, because the path of those celestial bodies can be predicted with a certain degree of mathematical accuracy, and operates on the magical concept of Sympathy, in which two things, once related, remain related (thus, the stars that are tied to a person’s birth remain tied to that person throughout their life).  Much of Astrology is concerned with the signs of the Zodiac – twelve constelations in the Western tradition corresponding to months of the year, or twelve animals in the Eastern/Chinese tradition corresponding to a cycle of twelve years.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Attuned From a Middle-English variation of “Tone”, means “to bring into harmony or agreement with”.  In some magic systems, in may be necessary for the practitioner to be Attuned, or in harmony with, some power, energy, object, or entity in order to use magic.  For instance, in “Star Wars” Jedi Knights need to be in “tune” with the “Force”.  Other magic users may need to be attuned to an artifact that grants its user power.
Source Middle English
Part of Speech Prt.
Function Descriptive
Term Augur From Latin  “Augur”, a Diviner or Soothsayer, from “Augere”, “To Prosper”; Divining or predicting the future from Omens, prognosticating, or something that serves as an omen or foreshadows the future
Source Latin
Part of Speech V.
Function Action/Effect
Term Augur From Latin “Augur”, a Diviner or Soothsayer; An ancient Roman official in charge of observing and interpretting omens to guide public affairs; a soothsayer or prophet; Someone who can predict the future through mystical means
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Augurer From Latin “Augur”, a Diviner or Soothsayer; A variation of the noun usage of Augur.
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Augury From Lating “Augur”, a Diviner or Soothsayer; the practice of interpretting omens and divining the future; the art of an Augur.  Specifically, in ancient Rome, Augury was the study of the flight patterns of birds as a mean of divining the future.
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Aura From Greek “Ayra” a breath of wind or a breeze; Usually refers to a field of subtle, etheric, luminous or spiritual energy that surrounds a person.  The Aura is frequently invisible, but may be perceptible by use of the Third Eye, or by some other magical or extraordinary means.  When speaking of a person’s Aura, observation of the Aura may reveal something meaningful about the person, such as their mood or thoughts.  In the real-world, “study” or Auras is usually relegated to Paranormal or Parapsychological research, and is considered a pseudoscience.  In some magic systems, any magical object, any human, any magical being or any living thing may have an Aura that is perceptible with magical means.  The meaning and function of that aura will usually be different from one magic system to the next, if it is meaningful at all.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Action/Effect
Term Auspex From Latin “Avis” and “Spex” meaning “Bird” and “Watcher” respectively; Someone who watches or studies the patterns of the flight of birds to make Divinations.  See also Augur.
Source Rome
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Auspices From Latin “Avis” and “Spex” meaning “Bird” and “Watcher” respectively; Auspices is the plural of Auspex, but can also refer to the signs that an Auspex sees that enable him to Divine.  Today the word means favorable signs or Omens.
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Action/Effect
Term Austromancy From Latin “Auster” meaning “The South Wind” + Greek “-mancy” from “manteia” meaning “Divination”; Divination by study of the winds.
Source  
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Benevolent Powers Something external to the magic user, usually intelligent but sometimes not, that provides power to the magic user for good or benevolent purposes (i.e. the betterment of others, improving society, discovering the truth, etc.).  A Benevolent Power may be a Deity, an Angelic or Celestial being, or a terrestrial being that is inherrently magical (such as a Dragon or a Unicorn), it may be a magical object, or it may be the essence of good magic itself.
Source  
Part of Speech N.
Function Power Source
Term Bewitch From Middle English “Be” + “wicchen” from Old English “wicca” a Witch or Sorcerer; The act of casting a spell by Witchcraft or Magic; especially to cast a spell over someone, to enchant or charm the person.
Source Old English
Part of Speech V.
Function Action/Effect
Term Bewitching From Middle English “Be” + “wicchen” from Old English “wicca” a Witch or Sorcerer; A description of someone or something that can Bewitch another
Source Old English
Part of Speech Ger.
Function Descriptive
Term Bibliomancy From Greek “Biblion” meaning “Book” + “-mancy” from “manteia” meaning “Divination”; Bibliomancy is divination by means of books, most commonly by use of the Bible or other sacred texts.  The most common mechanism of bibliomancy is asking a question, then turning to random page and passage and interpretting the passage in the context of the question that was asked.  In a magic system, this might be a legitimate mechanism for answers to questions or for causing magical effects.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Black Arts A common term for Black Magic
Source Folklore
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Black Magic Black Magic is a type of magic or sorcery that draws upon Malevolent Powers for the purpose of causing evil or harm to another, or to obtain power.  Examples may included causing disease or illness, causing death, or some other result that is Taboo or morally objectionable.  Black Magic Spells are often called Hexes, Jinxes, and Curses.  In some magic systems, Black Magic will be completely separate in both form and function from other types of magic used for benevolent purposes.  In other systems, the magic used is the same, but the purpose or aim of the magic will be what distinguishes “good” or White Magic from Black.   In others, the difference may be more subtle, such that the basic magic is the same, but the implements or tools used to create that magic are different.  In others, there’s no difference at all, either because all magic is Evil, or all magic is Amoral.  According to some classifications, Witchcraft is always a form of Black Magic.
Source Folklore
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Blaspheme From Greek “Blasphemein”, “Evil Speaking”; To speak blasphemy, to speak of or to God or a Deity in an irreverent or impious manner, to revile, execrate, or curse.  The verb form of Blasphemy
Source Greek
Part of Speech V.
Function Action/Effect
Term Blasphemer From Greek “Blasphemein”, “Evil Speaking”; Someone who Blasphemes.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Blasphemy From Greek “Blasphemein”, “Evil Speaking”; Generally the word Blasphemy refers to irreverence toward God or Holy personages or institutions, and usually is taken to mean a more extreme form of such irreverence.  Many religions consider Blasphemy to be among the most egregious sins or errors a person can commit, because it directly insults their Deity.  It can also mean profane language, as in using “curse words”.  This folk connection actually gives the word Blasphemy something of a mystical undertone that can be especially useful in magical system terminology (particularly a system that uses Deities or Divine Beings as integral to magic).  Blasphemy can also be thought to mean invoking a deity or supernatural power for effects contrary to the nature of that Deity.  Depending on the Deity, this can have disastrous consequences or cause problems for the magic user, or may simply be a Taboo usage of the power of that Deity.  In this way, Blasphemy can also be seen as an alternate word for Curse.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Blessed Something that is consecrated, sacred or holy, or osmething divinely favored.  In magic systems in which power flows from a Deity, something that is Blessed will usually have a magical Aura or magic power in itself, due to its association with a powerful source of magic (i.e. the Deity or a representative like a Priest or Cleric).
Source Middle English
Part of Speech Prt.
Function Descriptive
Term Cadaceus An ancient symbol of a herald’s staff encircled two intertwining serpents sprouting two wings, the wand or Mercury, Isis or Nike; representative of a magic wand; often used in place of the Rod of Asclepius as a symbol of medicine
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Symbol
Term Cant From Latin “Cantus”, a Song or “Cantere” To Sing or from Irish “Caint”, Speech or talk; A Cant is a secret language used only by members of a group to conceal meaning from outsiders.  Popularly known as Thieve’s Cant, the secret language of thieves and beggars, or as the Irish/English language mix that is the language of Irish Travelers, or the Romani, Scottish Gaelic and Scots mix of Scottish Gypsies.  In a magic system, a Cant may be the secret language of magic users or of a priestly caste.  Use of the Cant may allow magic users to conceal the methods and proper procedures or ingredients for spellcasting.  Or, a Cant may be a secret language of power that allows magic users to cast spells (see Adamic as another example).
Source Latin or Irish
Part of Speech N.
Function Magic Word
Term Cantrap An alternate spelling of cantrip
Source Scottish
Part of Speech N.
Function Action/Effect
Term Cantrip Precise origin unknown, but possibly derived from old Danish “Gan”, relating to witchcraft, and “trap”, a snare; A Charm, Incantation, or Magic Spell; to Trick by Sorcerery, Artful shamming or deception, a trick; the term is typically used to refer to a minor magical effect, especially one that is more showy than useful (like flashes of light or sound) or one that is very similar to what can be accomplished with real-world sleight-of-hand.
Source Scottish
Part of Speech N.
Function Action/Effect
Term Cartomancy Cartomancy is Fortune-telling or Divination by use of a deck of cards.  Practitioners may be referred to as either Cartomancers or Card Readers.  Cartomancy can either use a standard deck of cards, or a Tarot deck (called Taromancy).  Each of the standard suits (including additional suits from the “French Suits”) may be associated with an Element or Elemental: Clubs (sticks or wands) for Fire and the Salamander, Diamonds (coins or mirrors or pentacles) for Earth and the Gnome, Hearts (cups) for Water and Undine, Spades (swords) for Air and Sylph, Tears (waves) for Wood and the Fae, and Hands for Metal and the Dwarf, or some alternate but similar classification.
Source  
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Casting Lots Casting of Lots is a practice of casting some sort of randomizing divice (runes, bones, stones, dice etc.) and interpretting the outcome.  The practice can be used as a random (and ostensibly fair) mechanism for making decisions, sorting, and dividing gains (such as in the Bible, when the Roman Soldiers “cast lots” for Jesus’ clothing), but in this context also means Casting Lots as a method of Divination.  In Biblical literature, Casting of Lots was also used to determine the will and mind of God, for example.  Casting Lots is also called Cleromancy.
Source  
Part of Speech V.
Function Action/Effect
Term Celestial From Latin “Caelestis”, meaning “Heavenly”; Pertaining to the Heavens or Eternities, or pertaining to the Beings who reside there (Angels, Deities, or Divinities); in a magic system, Celestial or Heavenly Powers may be a source of power for magic, or Celestial Powers may intervene directly in mortal affairs in magical and miraculous displays.  Or Celestial Powers may draw upon the same magical source which mortals are able to tap to perform their magic, but on a much larger or cosmic scale.
Source Latin
Part of Speech Adj.
Function Descriptive
Term Ceraunoscopy The suffix “-scopy” is from Greek “Skopia” meaning “Watching”; Ceraunoscopy is Divination by interpretation of Thunder and Lightning.
Source Unknown
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Chakra According to Hindu belief, Chakras as “vortices” or “whorls” of energy that permeate the body, located on the surface of a spiritual or etheric copy of each person.  The Chakras are the major points through which energy flows, and on which the energy centers.  The Chakras are represented as being wheel-like or flower-like, with a certain number of petals or a certain number of spokes.  The flow of energy (Qi, ki or chi in Chinese) is regulated by these Chakras.  Use of Chakras may play an important role in an Indian or East-Asian themed magic system.  In a magic system, mastery of the Chakras can grant a mystical ability to heal ailments, or may grant superhuman-like powers.
Source Hindu
Part of Speech N.
Function Power Source
Term Chakras Plural of Chakra
Source Hindu
Part of Speech N.
Function Power Source
Term Chant From Latin “Cantare”, To Sing, from “Cantus”, A Song; From Dictionary.com,  a short, simple melody, especially one characterized by single notes to which indefinite numbers of syllables are intoned, used in singing psalms, canticles, etc. in church services; a song; a phrase… repeated rhythmically.  Chants can serve as part of the ritual for casting a magical spell in some magic systems (especially those requiring magical, precisely pronounced words or magical rituals, or other forms of spoken invocation).
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Magical Ritual
Term Charm From Latin “Carmen”, A Song, Magical Formula; An amulet or something worn for its magical power, an item that has been enchanted
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Artifact
Term Charm From Latin “Carmen”, A Song, Magical Formula; The chanting or recitation of a magical verse or fomula;  Usually a Charm refers to a spell that is in the form of verse; may also refer to the infusion of magical power, holiness, or divine will into an object (the fashioning of a Charm in the other sense).  The word Charm also has a meaning of something that appears pleasing or attractive (or the act of being pleasing and attractive) which is probably derived from the idea that a Charm can be used to make one’s self more attractive to others by magical means.
Source Latin
Part of Speech V.
Function Magical Ritual
Term Charmed Something that is Charmed is infused with Magical power, by means of an incantation, or something (or, usually, someone) that has fallen under the influence of a magical effect.
Source Latin
Part of Speech Prt.
Function Descriptive
Term Cheiromancy From Greek “Cheiro” meaning “Hand” + “-mancy” from “manteia” meaning “Divination”; also called Palmistry or Palm Reading, Cheiromancy is the study of the palm of the hand as a means of Fortune-telling or Divination.   Of interest are the various “Lines” (i.e. “heart line”, “life line”, etc.) and “Mounts”, as well as the general shape of the hand.  The dominant hand is usually used in palm reading, and different traits and interpretations are ascribed to the lines on the right as opposed to left hands.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Chimera From Greek “Chimaira”, a She-goat; The word is pronounced as though the “ch” were in fact a “k”; Specifically, from Greek Myth, a Chimera is a mythical monster having a lion’s head, a goat’s body, and a serpent’s tail, or, alternately, the body and head of a lioness, with the head of a goat sprouting from it’s back, and a serpent for a tail (with the tail tipped with the serpent’s head), it is frequently also depicted a creature with a lion’s body and three heads: a lion, a goat, and a snake, lizard, or dragon’s head (due to its depiction in the D&D game).   The beast was said to be fire-breathing like a dragon.  Generally, the word Chimera can refer to any creature composed of multiple parts from different animals.  In this sense, some magical systems may consider a Chimera to be the product of sorcery or magic, especially the work of evil wizards who dabble in the forces of life and nature to produce unnatural and terrifying results.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Creature
Term Chimerical From Greek “Chimaira”, a She-goat; An adjective that means something that is wildly fanciful, unrealistic, or imaginary.
Source Greek
Part of Speech Adj.
Function Descriptive
Term Chinese Elements Like the Classical Elements, the Chinese Elements are a group of five Elemental powers, concepts, or ideas which govern the interaction of various materials.  The Chinese Elemental System is called Wu Xing, and relates the phases of material progression.  There are five elements: Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, and Water.  Each element is used to generate the next element in a circular cycle, and each element can be used to destroy or overcome another element in a separate cycle (like Paper-Rock-Scissors or Ro-Sham-Bo).  Wood feeds Fire, Fire makes Earth (in the form of Ash), Earth holds Metal (in the form of Ore), Metal draws up or carries Water, and Water nourishes Wood.  Likewise, Fire melts metal, Metal chops Wood, Wood parts Earth (via the Roots), Earth absorbs or muddies Water, and Water quenches Fire.  Finally, in another opposing cycle – the reverse of the creative cycle, Fire burns Wood, Wood absorbs Water, Water rusts Metal, Metal breaks Earth, Earth smothers Fire.  The cyclical Creating and Overcoming nature of the Chinese Elemental system lends itself very easily to creating a balanced magic system.
Source China
Part of Speech N.
Function Power Source
Term Clairvoyance From French “Clair”, Clear and “Voyance”, Vision, Seeing; Clairvoyance is the ability to see or discern things or to gather information through means outside the normal senses; it is often equated with Extra-sensory Perception (ESP).  Specifically, Clairvoyance is usually understood to be the ability to see things beyond the normal range of vision, or to see things despite usual impediments to vision such as distance, time, or obstacles.  The related term Clairaudience has a similar meaning, but refers to the ability to hear things that normally cannot be heard, or which are very far away.  Additionally, there is Clairsentience (knowledge gained through Paranormal means, especially including tactile information), Clairalience (relating to the sense of smell), Claircognizance (relating specifically to knowledge, knowing something without any explanation for why you know it), and Clairgustance (relating to the sense of taste).  Besides being the result of ESP, Clairvoyance (and its related forms) can also be the result of a magical effect, such as a spell that allows one to see great distances, or to see through the eyes of another being.  In popular depiction, this may involve the use of a Crystal Ball.
Source French
Part of Speech N.
Function Action/Effect
Term Clairvoyant From French “Clair”, Clear and “Voyant”, Seeing; A Clairvoyant is someone gifted with the ability of Clairvoyance; Clairvoyant is also the adjective described someone or something with this ability.
Source French
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Classical Elements The Classical Elements are a group of Four or Five elementary substances from which all of matter and existence are made.  There were very similar systems of Elements in both Ancient Greece and Ancient India.  The elements are, in ascending order, Earth, Water, Air, Fire and a Fifth Element that has number of different names.  In fictional Magic Systems, the Classical Elements are commonly used as a power source or the essential materials for Magic, with each element representing a type of Energy which can power spells or the substance from which spells are made.  In some systems a magic user will need a source of the element in order to manipulate the energies inherrent in that element (easy for Earth and Air, usually, harder for Water and especially Fire).  In other systems the reverse is true, in which the magic user can access the fundamental energy itself (either because that energy permeates all things, or through access to a “plane” of that energy, etc.) and can use that energy to manipulate the physical world.  In these magical systems, Water is sometimes replaced by Ice (emphasizing the “cold” aspect of Water) and Air is sometimes replaced by Wind (effectively the same concept with a different name, emphasizing the “Movement” aspect of Air).  It is also worth noting that the four standard Classical Elements correspond to the four States of Matter in modern physics: Solid, Liquid, Gas, and Plasma.
Source Greek/Hindu
Part of Speech N.
Function Power Source
Term Cleric From Latin “Clericus” Priest, from Greek “Klerikos” from “Kleros”, Lot, allotment; A cleric is a member of a clergy, a Priest.  Popularized in Dungeons and Dragons as the wielders of Divine Magic, magic powers granted unto them by their Deity, the term Cleric in Fantasy circles has come to mean a Priestly character with magic powers (usualy those derived from the character’s deity).  In general, however, the term can refer to any priestly character, magical or otherwise.
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Cleromancy From Greek “Kleros” meaning “Lot” + “-mancy” from “manteia” meaning “Divination”; Another term for Casting Lots, in the sense of doing so for purposes of Divination.
Source Greek
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Conjuration From Latin “Conjurare”, meaning “To Swear Together”; In its original Latin meaning, this word meant “A Conspiracy” (i.e., those sworn together), but somewhere along the way it took on a decidely magical meaning.  One source likens a conjuration as being an invocation, evocation, exorcism, or summoning.  Dictionary.com offers these definitions: “the act of calling on or invoking a sacred name; an incantation, magical charm”.  In general contexts, Conjuration seems to be understood to mean calling upon (Conjuring) spririts or other magical forces to do the magic user’s bidding, but can also mean the act of doing magic in general. 
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Conjure From Latin “Conjurare”, meaning “To Swear Together”; the verb form of Conjuration; the act of calling upon spirits or magical forces to accomplish some feat for the magic user.
Source Latin
Part of Speech V.
Function Action/Effect
Term Conjurer From Latin “Conjurare”, meaning “To Swear Together”; A practitioner of Conjuration; someone who Conjures.
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Conjuror From Latin “Conjurare”, meaning “To Swear Together”; An alternate spelling of Conjurer
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Practitioner
Term Conjury From Latin “Conjurare”, meaning “To Swear Together”; An alternate noun-form of the word Conjuration, meaning the practice of Magic, or the act of calling up a spirit or devil.
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Classification
Term Countercharm From Dictionary.com: “To destroy the effect of a charm” or “having the power to destroy the effect of a charm”; a term made popular by J.K. Rowlings’ Harry Potter as a spell that has the effect of counteracting another spell.
Source Latin
Part of Speech N.
Function Action/Effect
Term Crown In studies of the Hindu concept of Chakras, the Crown refers to the seventh and highest of the primary Chakras, Sahasrara, the Chakra of pure consciousness.  The name comes from the crown of the head, where it is located.  Which is not to say that the word Crown cannot also be used to refer to, well, an enchanted Crown (not uncommon in fantasy literature), or have some other magical meaning.
Source Hindu
Part of Speech N.
Function Power Source
Term Curse The word is apparently of disputed origin; A Curse is a wish or expression of a desire for harm or unhappiness to fall upon another person or people, particularly by means of supernatural powers.  Thus, any magical spell, incantation, magic, or invocation of a deity or higher power with the intent to do harm to another can be referred to as a Curse.   The word can also refer to the results of such a spell or invocation (or in other words, someone who has been affected by a Curse now has a Curse, or it is the Curse of that person).  In contemporary usage, a curse is often described instead as praying (presumably to God) for the death of another person.  In some uses, Curses can also be laid upon objects, such that the next person to use the object or to pass over the object or otherwise interact with the object in a specific way triggers the effects of the curse upon that person.  Places can also be Cursed, such that the Curse affects the place itself, or affects all in the environs of that place.  Curses can also be conditional, such that a Curse will only come upon someone if they do something preconceived as offensive to the Curse-layer (such as a Curse on a Mummy’s Tomb).  Other words for Curse include Hex and Jinx.  A Curse can generally be categorized as Black Magic, insofar as Black Magic refers to magic used to cause ill or evil effects on others, but that will depend on the way a given magic system chooses to define Black Magic.
Source Old English
Part of Speech N.
Function Action/Effect
Term Cursed The object of a Curse, i.e. the target of the Curse after the Curse has been laid.  Someone or something is said to be Cursed if it has a Curse upon it.  Another word for this is Accursed, which has a more archaic feel to it.
Source Old English
Part of Speech Prt.
Function Action/Effect
2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 26, 2010 3:48 pm

    I agree with this long definition of magical word wich, better than wikipedia this definition!

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