Overview

exorcize


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Originally, conjure up or command an evil spirit; later, drive out or attempt to drive out an evil spirit from a person or place in which it is believed to be present. Recorded from late Middle English, the word comes via French or ecclesiastical Latin from Greek exorkizein, from ex- ‘out’ + horkos ‘oath’. The specific sense of driving out an evil spirit dates from the mid 16th century.


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