numinous

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

Circa 1650, from Latin numen (nod, divine sway, divinity) +‎ -ous

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

numinous (comparative more numinous, superlative most numinous)

  1. Related to a numen; indicating the presence of a divinity
  2. Awe-inspiring; evoking a sense of the transcendent, mystical or sublime.
    All quests are concerned with a numinous object, e.g. the Holy Grail
    • Peter Brown, The World of Late Antiquity (London 1971), p. 154:
      [Justinian I] had the genius to realize the vast resources available to an east Roman emperor of the early sixth century — an almost numinous past history, a full treasury, an unrivalled supply of human talent in every field.

Derived terms[edit]