inspiration

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See also: Inspiration

English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From Old French inspiration, from Late Latin īnspīrātiōnem (nominative: īnspīrātiō), from Latin īnspīrāta (past participle of inspīrō).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

inspiration (countable and uncountable, plural inspirations)

  1. (physiology, uncountable) The drawing of air into the lungs, accomplished in mammals by elevation of the chest walls and flattening of the diaphragm, as part of the act of respiration.
    • 1857, M. Hall [junior] editor, Prone and postival respiration in drowning and other forms of apricea, or suspended respiration:
      The respiratory movements are no longer normal and rhythmic acts of inspiration and exspiration, but abnormal and irregular expiratory movements
    • 2008, G Berghs, “Stage fright in singers: Three reaction types”, Folia Phoniatrica et Logopaedica: 
      If a reaction involves increased muscle tonus and too much inspiration, muscle relaxation and exhalation exercises might be of use.
  2. (countable) A breath, a single inhalation.
    • 1826, John Bostock, An Elementary System of Physiology, p. 220:
      Laughing is produced by an inspiration succeeded by a succession of short imperfect expirations.
    • 1838, Thomas Hodgkin, Dr. Fisher, On the influence of physical agents on life, translation of original by William Frédéric Edwards, Pouillet (Claude Servais Mathias, M.), Luke Howard:
      One of them had a temperature of 40° cent. 104° Fahr. and 97 inspirations per minute.
    • 2013, A Kose, C Yildirim, B Kose, N Gunay, …, “Can agricultural drugs be used against lice? Accident, suicide or truth? Case presentations”, Eastern Journal of Medicine: 
      On physical examination, blood pressure was 145/70 mm Hg, pulse was 108 beats per minute, respiratory rate was 36 inspirations per minute, body temperature was 38 ºC and her oxygen saturation (during nasal oxygen intake) was 93%.
  3. A supernatural divine influence on the prophets, apostles, or sacred writers, by which they were qualified to communicate moral or religious truth with authority; a supernatural influence which qualifies men to receive and communicate divine truth; also, the truth communicated.
    • 1688, Jacques Bénigne Bossuet, The History of the Variations of the Protestant Churches Vol.2 (1829 translation), p. 355:
      The question, therefore, at issue is, not whether those external means be sufficient without grace and divine inspiration, for none pretends that": but, in order to hinder men from feigning or imagining an inspiration, whether it has not been God's economy, and his usual conduct to make his inspiration walk hand in hand with certain means of fact, which men can neither feign in the air without being convicted of falsehood, nor imagine without illusion.
  4. The act of an elevating or stimulating influence upon the intellect, emotions or creativity. In this sense, it is generally followed by the adposition to or for:
    • She was waiting for inspiration to write a book.
    • She was waiting for inspiration for writing a book.
    • 1865, George Duffield, The Nation's Wail, p. 6:
      We caught the inspiration of his joy; and imagination painted a glorious future near at hand for our land, quickly to develop itself under the guidance of his fostering wisdom, and fraternal counsels and care.
    • 1898, Winston Churchill, chapter 4, The Celebrity:
      “Well,” I answered, at first with uncertainty, then with inspiration, “he would do splendidly to lead your cotillon, if you think of having one.” ¶ “So you do not dance, Mr. Crocker?” ¶ I was somewhat set back by her perspicuity.
    • 1998, David Allen Brown, Leonardo da Vinci: Origins of a Genius, p. 25:
      All this suggests that Andrea may, like the authors of the devotional panel, the fresco, and the print – and like Leonardo, as we shall see – have found his inspiration in Pollaiuolo.
    • 2002, Sven Rasegård, Man and Science: A Web of Systems and Social Conventions, p. 2:
      And now it is time for problem solving which, if successful, will create new ideas serving as an inspiration source for future research objects of the researcher in question as well as other researchers within the same field.
    • 2013, Phil McNulty, "Liverpool 1-0 Man Utd", BBC Sport, 1 September 2013:
      As for United, this was a performance lacking in inspiration, purpose and threat and once again underlined the urgency for transfer business to be done in the closing hours of the transfer window.
  5. A person, object, or situation which quickens or stimulates an influence upon the intellect, emotions or creativity.
    • 2008 April 5, George W. Bush, Presidential Radio Address:
      The people of Ukraine and Georgia are an inspiration to the world and I was pleased that this week NATO declared that Ukraine and Georgia will become members of NATO.
  6. A new idea, especially one which arises suddenly and is clever or creative.
    • 1895, H. G. Wells, The Time Machine, ch. 1:
      After an interval the Psychologist had an inspiration. "It must have gone into the past if it has gone anywhere," he said.
    • 1916, Gertrude Franklin Horn Atherton, Mrs. Balfame, ch. 15:
      Mrs. Balfame had an inspiration. "My God!" she exclaimed, springing to her feet, "the murderer . . . was hidden in the cellar or attic all night, all the next day! He may be here yet!"
    • 2007 July 1, Sylviane Gold, "Scenery Chewer Plays It Straight, Methodically," New York Times (retrieved 3 Sept. 2013):
      [H]e accompanied her to a rehearsal of a skit satirizing “Casablanca,” and the director had an inspiration: Wouldn’t it be a laugh to cast a 10-year-old as Rick?

Synonyms[edit]

Antonyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

References[edit]


French[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /ɛ̃spiʁasjɔ̃/

Etymology[edit]

From Old French inspiration, from Late Latin īnspīrātiōnem (nominative: īnspīrātiō), from Latin īnspīrāta (past participle of inspīrō).

Noun[edit]

inspiration f (plural inspirations)

  1. inspiration (instance of breathing in)
  2. inspiration (divine intervention)
  3. inspiration (something which brings about creativity or perseverance)

See also[edit]


Old French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Late Latin inspirationem (nominative: inspiratio), from Latin inspiratus (past participle of inspīrō).

Noun[edit]

inspiration f (oblique plural inspirations, nominative singular inspiration, nominative plural inspirations)

  1. inspiration (act of breathing in)
  2. inspiration (something which inspires)

Descendants[edit]

References[edit]