occult

[16] Something that is occult is etymologically ‘hidden’. The word comes from the past participle of Latin occulere ‘hide’, a compound verb formed from the prefix ob- and an unrecorded *celere, a relative of cēlāre ‘hide’ (which forms the second syllable of English conceal). When English acquired it, it still meant broadly ‘secret, hidden’ (‘Metals are nothing else but the earth’s hid and occult plants’, John Maplet, Green Forest 1567), a sense preserved in the derived astronomical term occultation ‘obscuring of one celestial body by another’ [16]. The modern associations with supernatural mysteries did not begin to emerge until the 17th century. => CELL, CONCEAL, HALL, HELL
* * *
   Something occult is secret or hidden to others. Hence the source of the word in Latin occulere, 'to cover over,' from ob-, 'over,' and the root of the verb that gave English conceal. See also hell.

The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins. 2013.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Occult — Oc*cult , a. [L. occultus, p. p. of occulere to cover up, hide; ob (see {Ob }) + a root prob. akin to E. hell: cf. F. occulte.] Hidden from the eye or the understanding; invisible; secret; concealed; unknown. [1913 Webster] It is of an occult… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • occult — ► NOUN (the occult) ▪ supernatural beliefs, practices, or phenomena. ► ADJECTIVE 1) relating to the occult. 2) beyond ordinary knowledge or experience; esoteric. 3) Medicine (of a disease or process) present but not readily discernible. ► VERB …   English terms dictionary

  • occult — [ə kult′, ä′kult΄] adj. [L occultus, concealed, pp. of occulere, to cover over < ob (see OB ) + celare, to hide (see HALL)] 1. hidden; concealed 2. secret; esoteric 3. beyond human understanding; mysterious 4. designating or of certa …   English World dictionary

  • Occult — Allgemeine Informationen Genre(s) Black Metal, Thrash Metal, Death Metal Gründung 1990 Auflösung 2005 Website …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Occult — Oc*cult , v. t. To eclipse; to hide from sight. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • occult — index blind (obscure), cloak, covert, elusive, esoteric, hidden, incomprehensible, inexplicable …   Law dictionary

  • occult — (adj.) 1530s, secret, not divulged, from L. occultus hidden, concealed, secret, pp. of occulere cover over, conceal, from ob over (see OB (Cf. ob )) + a verb related to celare to hide, from PIE root *kel to hide (see CELL (Cf …   Etymology dictionary

  • occult — esoteric, *recondite, abstruse Analogous words: *mysterious, inscrutable, arcane: mystic, cabalistic, *mystical, anagogic …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • occult — [adj] mysterious, secret; supernatural abstruse, acroamatic, arcane, cabalistic, concealed, deep, eerie, esoteric, hermetic, hidden, invisible, magic, magical, mystic, mystical, obscure, orphic, preternatural, profound, psychic, recondite,… …   New thesaurus

  • Occult — For other uses, see Occult (disambiguation). The word occult comes from the Latin word occultus (clandestine, hidden, secret), referring to knowledge of the hidden .[1] In the medical sense it is used to refer to a structure or process that is… …   Wikipedia

  • Occult — Hidden. Occult blood is hidden from the eye but is nonetheless present and can be detected by chemical tests. Spina bifida occulta is a hidden defect in the spinal column. * * * 1. Hidden; concealed; not manifest. 2. Denoting a concealed… …   Medical dictionary

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