Definitions for: Witch


[n] a being (usually female) imagined to have special powers derived from the devil
[n] a female sorcerer or magician
[n] an ugly evil-looking old woman
[v] cast a spell over someone or something; put a hex on someone or something



Webster (1913) Definition: Witch, n. [Cf. Wick of a lamp.]
A cone of paper which is placed in a vessel of lard or other
fat, and used as a taper. [Prov. Eng.]


Witch, n. [OE. wicche, AS. wicce, fem., wicca, masc.;
perhaps the same word as AS. w[=i]tiga, w[=i]tga, a
soothsayer (cf. Wiseacre); cf. Fries. wikke, a witch, LG.
wikken to predict, Icel. vitki a wizard, vitka to bewitch.]
1. One who practices the black art, or magic; one regarded as
possessing supernatural or magical power by compact with
an evil spirit, esp. with the Devil; a sorcerer or
sorceress; -- now applied chiefly or only to women, but
formerly used of men as well.

There was a man in that city whose name was Simon, a
witch. --Wyclif (Acts
viii. 9).

He can not abide the old woman of Brentford; he
swears she's a witch. --Shak.

2. An ugly old woman; a hag. --Shak.

3. One who exercises more than common power of attraction; a
charming or bewitching person; also, one given to
mischief; -- said especially of a woman or child.
[Colloq.]

4. (Geom.) A certain curve of the third order, described by
Maria Agnesi under the name versiera.

5. (Zo["o]l.) The stormy petrel.

Witch balls, a name applied to the interwoven rolling
masses of the stems of herbs, which are driven by the
winds over the steppes of Tartary. Cf. Tumbleweed.
--Maunder (Treas. of Bot.)

Witches' besoms (Bot.), tufted and distorted branches of
the silver fir, caused by the attack of some fungus.
--Maunder (Treas. of Bot.)

Witches' butter (Bot.), a name of several gelatinous
cryptogamous plants, as Nostoc commune, and {Exidia
glandulosa}. See Nostoc.

Witch grass (Bot.), a kind of grass (Panicum capillare)
with minute spikelets on long, slender pedicels forming a
light, open panicle.

Witch meal (Bot.), vegetable sulphur. See under
Vegetable.


Witch, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Witched; p. pr. & vb. n.
Witching.] [AS. wiccian.]
To bewitch; to fascinate; to enchant.

[I 'll] witch sweet ladies with my words and looks.
--Shak.

Whether within us or without The spell of this illusion
be That witches us to hear and see. --Lowell.

Synonyms: beldam, beldame, bewitch, crone, enchant, enchantress, glamour, hag, hex, jinx

See Also: becharm, charm, coven, imaginary being, imaginary creature, occultist, old woman, pythoness, spell, voodoo, warlock

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