ghost

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search

English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English gost, gast, from Old English gāst (breath, soul, spirit, ghost, being), from Proto-Germanic *gaistaz (ghost, spirit), from Proto-Indo-European *ǵʰeizd-, *ǵʰizd- (anger, agitation), *ǵʰeysd-, *ǵʰisd- (anger, agitation). Cognate with Scots ghaist (ghost), West Frisian geast (spirit), Dutch geest (spirit, mind, ghost), German Geist (spirit, mind, intellect), Swedish gast (ghost), Sanskrit हेड (heḍa, anger, hatred).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

ghost (plural ghosts)

  1. (rare) The spirit; the soul of man.
    • Spenser
      Then gives her grieved ghost thus to lament.
  2. The disembodied soul; the soul or spirit of a deceased person; a spirit appearing after death; an apparition; a specter.
    Everyone showed that the ghost of an old lady haunted this crypt.
    • Shakespeare
      The mighty ghosts of our great Harries rose.
    • Coleridge
      I thought that I had died in sleep/And was a blessed ghost.
    • 1992, Rudolf M. Schuster, The Hepaticae and Anthocerotae of North America: East of the Hundredth Meridian, volume V, page vii
      Hepaticology, outside the temperate parts of the Northern Hemisphere, still lies deep in the shadow cast by that ultimate "closet taxonomist," Franz Stephani—a ghost whose shadow falls over us all.
  3. Any faint shadowy semblance; an unsubstantial image; a phantom; a glimmering.
    • Poe
      Each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
    • 2013 May-June, William E. Conner, “An Acoustic Arms Race”, American Scientist, volume 101, number 3, page 206-7: 
      Earless ghost swift moths become “invisible” to echolocating bats by forming mating clusters close (less than half a meter) above vegetation and effectively blending into the clutter of echoes that the bat receives from the leaves and stems around them.
    not a ghost of a chance; the ghost of an idea
  4. A false image formed in a telescope, camera, or other optical device by reflection from the surfaces of one or more lenses.
  5. An unwanted image similar to and overlapping or adjacent to the main one on a television screen, caused by the transmitted image being received both directly and via reflection.
  6. A ghostwriter.
  7. (Internet) An unresponsive user on IRC, resulting from the user's client disconnecting without notifying the server.
  8. (computing) An image of a file or hard disk.
  9. (theater) An understudy.
  10. (espionage) A covert (and deniable) agent.
  11. The faint image that remains after an attempt to remove graffiti.
    • 1992, Maurice J. Whitford, Getting Rid of Graffiti (page 45)
      Regardless of GRM used, graffiti ghosts persist. Protect cladding with surface coating or replace with graffiti resistant paint or laminate.
  12. (video games) An opponent in a racing game that follows a previously recorded route, allowing players to compete against previous best times.
    • 2012, Keith Burgun, Game Design Theory: A New Philosophy for Understanding Games
      This is also the case for some racing games (Super Mario Kart is a good example) that allow you to compete against your ghosts, which are precise recordings of your performance.
  13. (attributive, in names of species) white or pale
    ghost slug; ghostberry; ghostflower; ghost crab; ghost bat
  14. (attributive, in names of species) transparent or translucent
    ghost ant; ghost catfish; ghost nipper; ghost nudibranch
  15. (attributive) abandoned
    ghost town; ghost net; ghost ramp; ghost ship
  16. (attributive) the remains of
    ghost cell; ghost crater; ghost image
  17. (attributive) perceived or listed but not real
    ghost pain; ghost cellphone vibration; ghost island; ghost voter
  18. (attributive) of cryptid, supernatural or extraterrestrial nature
    ghost rocket; ghost deer; ghost cat
  19. (attributive) substitute
    ghost writer; ghost band; ghost singer

Synonyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

See also[edit]

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

Verb[edit]

ghost (third-person singular simple present ghosts, present participle ghosting, simple past and past participle ghosted)

  1. (obsolete, transitive) To haunt; to appear to in the form of an apparition.
  2. (obsolete) To die; to expire.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Sir Philip Sidney to this entry?)
  3. (transitive, intransitive) To ghostwrite.
  4. (computing) to copy a file or hard drive image.
  5. (Internet, transitive) To forcibly disconnect an IRC user who is using one's reserved nickname.
  6. This word needs a definition. Please help out and add a definition, then remove the text {{rfdef}}.
    • 2011 September 24, David Ornstein, “Arsenal 3 - 0 Bolton”, BBC Sport:
      Arsenal came into the match under severe pressure and nerves were palpable early on as Pratley was brilliantly denied by Szczesny after ghosting in front of Kieran Gibbs

Anagrams[edit]