fetish


fetish
fetishlike, adj.
/fet"ish, fee"tish/, n.
1. an object regarded with awe as being the embodiment or habitation of a potent spirit or as having magical potency.
2. any object, idea, etc., eliciting unquestioning reverence, respect, or devotion: to make a fetish of high grades.
3. Psychol. any object or nongenital part of the body that causes a habitual erotic response or fixation.
Also, fetich.
[1605-15; earlier fateish < Pg feitiço charm, sorcery (n.), artificial (adj.) < L facticius FACTITIOUS; r. fatisso, fetisso < Pg, as above]
Syn. 1. talisman, amulet.

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Object believed to have magical power to protect or aid its owner, and by extension, an object regarded with superstitious or extravagant trust or reverence.

In the 18th century it was applied to West African amulets; it has also been used for various items in American Indian religion. In psychology, a fetish is an object that substitutes for a person as the focus of sexual desire. See also fetishism.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • fetish — 1610s, fatisso, from Port. feitiço charm, sorcery, from L. facticius made by art, from facere to make (see FACTITIOUS (Cf. factitious)). L. facticius in Spanish has become hechizo magic, witchcraft, sorcery. Probably introduced by Portuguese… …   Etymology dictionary

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  • fetish — [fet′ish; ] also [ fēt′ish] n. [Fr fétiche < Port feitiço, a charm, sorcery; orig. adj. < L facticius, made by art, FACTITIOUS] 1. any object believed by some person or group to have magic power 2. any thing or activity to which one is… …   English World dictionary

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