American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A strong creative impulse, especially as a result of divine inspiration.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A blowing or breathing on, as of wind; a breath or blast of wind.
- n. An impelling mental force acting from within; supernal impulse or power, as of prophecy or expression; religious, poetic, or oratorical inspiration. Often spoken of as the divine afflatus, a translation of the Latin afflatus divinus, inspiration.
- n. A sudden rush of creative impulse or inspiration, often attributed to divine influence.
- n. A breath or blast of wind.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. A breath or blast of wind.
- n. A divine impartation of knowledge; supernatural impulse; inspiration.
- n. a strong creative impulse; divine inspiration
- From Latin afflatus, originally adflatu (compare English flatulence ("digestive gas, fart")), past participle of afflo ("to blow on"). In artistic sense, introduced by Cicero in De Natura Deorum (The Nature of the Gods) (44 BCE) II.167, as alternative to existing and similar inspiration (literally “sucking in air”), which already had a more general and metaphorical sense, to emphasize specifically the initial insight and restore literal overtones. (Wiktionary)
- Latin afflātus, from past participle of afflāre, to breathe on : ad-, ad- + flāre, to blow; see bhlē- in Indo-European roots. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“So, over and over, when we looked - when I looked up words in the dictionary, see where Whitman was in 1855, there was always some surprising interesting accuracy or some area like the word afflatus or flatus.”
“The definition of "afflatus" is: 1. inspiration; an impelling mental force acting from within.”
“He was the sum of all ambition and the centre of all importance; he was held to have achieved in the loftiest sense, and probably because he deserved to; a kind of afflatus sat upon him.”
“The Hitchcock piece in particular is concerned less with artistic afflatus than with locating the master of suspense in the traditions of Englishness that even his most America-centred work sprang from.”
“Europe won't allow such a debate at home but feels the moral afflatus to tax its own citizens to promote one side of the argument in America.”
“Glenn Beck, of course, provides a divine afflatus.”
“Today's liberals, especially those who run the House, came of age amid the moral afflatus of the 1960s and are determined to remake America as a European entitlement state.”
“(Soundbite of laughter) GROSS: But afflatus of flatus actually means the miraculous communication of super natural knowledge, which kind of changes the whole feel of what hes saying there.”
“I dont know whether you say flatus or afflatus but it sounds like theres flatulence, flatulence surging through him.”
“(Reading) Through me the afflatus surging and surging ...”
These user-created lists contain the word ‘afflatus’.
Not just rare words, but thousands of RARE WORDS WITH DEFINITIONS.
If you want to see the definitions, too, go to
A selected sampling of words for intermediate and advanced spellers.
"Luciferous Logolepsy is a collection of over 9,000 obscure English words. Though the definition of an 'English' word might seem to be straightforward, it is not. There exist so many adopted, deriv...
I found most of these words in books! That means they MUST be good.
Words I've heard/read in use, words being learnt, words that I want to eventually use in everyday language, words that are high-brow and elitist and scholarly and obscure, words that display the wo...
My Favorite Words
Words taken from Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace.
Looking for tweets for afflatus.