American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. Black magic; witchcraft.
- n. A practice such as witchcraft, sorcery, necromancy, or black magic.
- n. figuratively, by extension A process that is mysterious or difficult to master.
GNU Webster's 1913
- The art practiced by conjurers and witches; necromancy; conjuration; magic.
- n. the belief in magical spells that harness occult forces or evil spirits to produce unnatural effects in the world
“Those who practise the black art are all "wizards" or "witches" -- names never given to practisers of the white art.”
“Al – Sahr, magic or the black art proper, gramarye, egromancy, while Al — Simiyá is white magic, electro-biology, a kind of natural and deceptive magic, in which drugs and perfumes exercise an important action.”
“One night, back in acting class, while I am sitting in the dark taking scrupulous notes in the giant black art notebook I am never without, my repetitively Oscar-thanked acting teacher interrupts himself midcritique, of two actors we are barely enduring, to announce, “Moon, you look like a writer.””
“Moslem writings; and those who would study the black art at head-quarters are supposed to go there.”
“There were a good many professors of the black art at this date, and Lilly studied under one Evans, a scoundrelly ex-parson from Wales, until, according to Lilly's own account, he discovered Evans to be the cheat he undoubtedly was.”
“And for many a long day afterwards was he mainly remembered as a co-worker in the black art with Friar BUNGAY, who together with him constructed, by the aid of the devil and diabolical rites, a brazen head which should possess the power of speech -- the experiment only failing through the negligence of an assistant. .173 Such was ROGER BACON in the memory of the later Middle Ages and many succeeding years; he was the typical alchemist, where that term carries with it the depth of disrepute, though indeed alchemy was for him but one, and that not the greatest, of many interests.”
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