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eldritch

Definition from Dictionary, a free dictionary
He that falls in love with himself will have no rivals.
Benjamin Franklin
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English

Pronunciation

Etymology

Old English ælf "elf" + rīċe "realm, kingdom"

Adjective

eldritch (comparative {{{1}}}, superlative {{{2}}})

Positive
eldritch

Comparative
{{{1}}}

Superlative
{{{2}}}

  1. unearthly, alien, supernatural, weird, spooky, eerie

Quotations

1790 1798?? 1850 1886 1922 1925 1936
ME: [[{{{enm}}}]] « 15th c. 16th c. 17th c. 18th c. 19th c. 20th c. 21st c.
  • 1790Robert Burns, Tam o' Shanter
    So Maggie runs, the witches follow,
    Wi' mony an eldritch skriech and hollo.
  • 1798Samuel Taylor Coleridge, The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere
    I look'd upon the rotting Sea,
    And drew my eyes away;
    I look'd upon the eldritch deck
    And there the dead men lay.
  • 1850Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter, ch VII
    Pearl, in utter scorn of her mother's attempt to quiet her, gave an eldritch scream, and then became silent.
  • 1886Robert Louis Stevenson, Kidnapped, ch 2
    And the woman, whose voice had risen to a kind of eldritch sing-song, turned with a skip, and was gone.
  • 1922Clark Ashton Smith, Remembered Light
    Till the twilight shivered with outcry of eldritch voices
    Like pain's last cry ere oblivion
  • 1925H. P. Lovecraft, Supernatural Horror in Literature
    The Scandinavian Eddas and Sagas thunder with cosmic horror, and shake with the stark fear of Ymir and his shapeless spawn; whilst our own Anglo-Saxon Beowulf and the later Continental Nibelung tales are full of eldritch weirdness.
  • 1936Robert E. Howard, The Hour of the Dragon, ch 19
    Like phantoms they passed across his limited range of vision and vanished, with only a fading glow to tell of their passing. Their appearance was indescribably eldritch. They were not Stygians, not anything Conan had ever seen. He doubted if they were even humans. They were like black ghosts, stalking ghoulishly along the haunted tunnels.

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