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Magic
(1,039 words)

1. Term and Meanings

The term “magic” derives by way of Lat. magia and Gk. mageia from OPer. magu-, a word of uncertain etymology denoting a priestly clan. In antiquity the term came to denote the more general practice of magic. Supernatural ability, rituals (Rite), automatic writing, and secret information were its stock-in-trade. Despite Christian opposition, it persisted in the Christian era. The study of comparative religion (Religious Studies) made the concept a basic category in the 19th century, treatin…

Cite this page
Kippenberg, Hans G., “Magic”, in: Encyclopedia of Christianity Online. Consulted online on 21 March 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2211-2685_eco_M18>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004169678, 20080512



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