Mag"ic (?), n. [OE. magique, L. magice, Gr. (sc. ), fr. . See Magic, a., and Magi.]

A comprehensive name for all of the pretended arts which claim to produce effects by the assistance of supernatural beings, or departed spirits, or by a mastery of secret forces in nature attained by a study of occult science, including enchantment, conjuration, witchcraft, sorcery, necromancy, incantation, etc.

An appearance made by some magic. Chaucer.

Celestial magic, a supposed supernatural power which gave to spirits a kind of dominion over the planets, and to the planets an influence over men. -- Natural magic, the art of employing the powers of nature to produce effects apparently supernatural. -- Superstitious, ∨ Geotic, magic, the invocation of devils or demons, involving the supposition of some tacit or express agreement between them and human beings.

Syn. -- Sorcery; witchcraft; necromancy; conjuration; enchantment.


© Webster 1913.

Mag"ic (?), Mag"ic*al (?), a. [L. magicus, Gr. , fr. : cf. F. magique. See Magi.]


Pertaining to the hidden wisdom supposed to be possessed by the Magi; relating to the occult powers of nature, and the producing of effects by their agency.


Performed by, or proceeding from, occult and superhuman agencies; done by, or seemingly done by, enchantment or sorcery. Hence: Seemingly requiring more than human power; imposing or startling in performance; producing effects which seem supernatural or very extraordinary; having extraordinary properties; as, a magic lantern; a magic square or circle.

The painter's magic skill. Cowper.

⇒ Although with certain words magic is used more than magical, -- as, magic circle, magic square, magic wand, -- we may in general say magic or magical; as, a magic or magical effect; a magic or magical influence, etc. But when the adjective is predicative, magical, and not magic, is used; as, the effect was magical.

Magic circle, a series of concentric circles containing the numbers 12 to 75 in eight radii, and having somewhat similar properties to the magic square. -- Magic humming bird Zool., a Mexican humming bird (Iache magica) , having white downy thing tufts. -- Magic lantern. See Lantern. -- Magic square, numbers so disposed in parallel and equal rows in the form of a square, that each row, taken vertically, horizontally, or diagonally, shall give the same sum, the same product, or an harmonical series, according as the numbers taken are in arithmetical, geometrical, or harmonical progression. -- Magic wand, a wand used by a magician in performing feats of magic.


© Webster 1913.