Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The creative imagination; unrestrained fancy. See Synonyms at imagination.
  • n. Something, such as an invention, that is a creation of the fancy.
  • n. A capricious or fantastic idea; a conceit.
  • n. Fiction characterized by highly fanciful or supernatural elements.
  • n. An example of such fiction.
  • n. An imagined event or sequence of mental images, such as a daydream, usually fulfilling a wish or psychological need.
  • n. An unrealistic or improbable supposition.
  • n. Music See fantasia.
  • n. A coin issued especially by a questionable authority and not intended for use as currency.
  • n. Obsolete A hallucination.
  • transitive v. To imagine; visualize.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. That which comes from one's imagination
  • n. The literary genre generally dealing with themes of magic and fictive medieval technology.
  • n. The drug gamma-hydroxybutyric acid.
  • v. To fantasize (about)
  • v. To have a fancy for; to be pleased with; to like.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Fancy; imagination; especially, a whimsical or fanciful conception; a vagary of the imagination; whim; caprice; humor.
  • n. Fantastic designs.
  • transitive v. To have a fancy for; to be pleased with; to like; to fancy.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To fancy; have a liking for.
  • To form or conceive fancifully or fantastically; form a mental picture of; imagine.
  • In music, to compose or perform in the manner of a fantasia.
  • In music, to play fantasias.
  • n. Same as fancy.
  • n. Irregular or erratic fancy in thought or action; unrestrained imagination; whim; caprice; vagary.
  • n. The forming of unreal, chimerical, or grotesque images in the mind; a mingling of incongruous or unfounded ideas or notions; disordered or distorted fancy; fantastic imagination.
  • n. A product or result of the power of fantasy; a fantastic image or thought; a disordered or distorted fancy; a phantasm.
  • n. In music, same as fantasia.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. fiction with a large amount of imagination in it
  • n. imagination unrestricted by reality
  • n. something many people believe that is false
  • v. indulge in fantasies

Etymologies

Middle English fantasie, fantsy, from Old French fantasie, from Latin phantasia, from Greek phantasiā, appearance, imagination, from phantazesthai, to appear, from phantos, visible, from phainesthai, to appear; see bhā-1 in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French fantasie ("fantasy"), from Latin phantasia ("imagination"), from Ancient Greek φαντασία (phantasia, "apparition"), from φαντάζω (phantazō, "to show at the eye or the mind"), from φαίνω (phainō, "to show in light"), from the same root as ϕῶς (phôs, "light"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The desire for authenticity * is* a Modernist element, so saying it's not found in fantasy, that fantasy is a Romantic form is simply to narrow the definition of "fantasy" to include Romantic works and techniques but exclude Modernist techniqes.

    Archive 2007-03-01

  • There have also been suggestions, if not recently, that the boom in fantasy is partly due to the negativity and lack of “soaring imagination” of current science fiction.

    F&SF, Reviewing, and Optimism « L.E. Modesitt, Jr. – The Official Website

  • Given the male-centric history of sex in fantasy, is it good or bad if my male character is into bondage?

    SEX SEX SEX SEX SEX «

  • CHERITH (at left): I think the Harry Potter books have created a greater interest in fantasy literature in the present day, but I think the need for fantasy is something very deeply rooted in the human mind, not just for children.

    Writer Unboxed » Blog Archive » INTERVIEW: Erin Hunter

  • Now, when you use the term fantasy, is this something you were doing for your personal pleasure?

    CNN Transcript Jun 27, 2005

  • Now that could be a result of my comparative lack of reading in fantasy, which is why I'm still open to reading more.

    SF Fanatic: I Am Not A Fan Of Fantasy, Here's Why

  • The "Shit Blows Up" fun of Jack's rampaging could even be quite validly deemed escapist; it's just that I try to subvert the consolation subtly within the episodes or through their relationships with the rest of the text, to seduce the reader into engaging with reality even when the fantasy is at its most sensationalist.

    Essay Rant Thingy

  • As you can tell, this is steeped in fantasy, which is unfortunate for me because this type of fantasy is simply not my cup of tea.

    REVIEW: 2007 Nebula Award Short Fiction Nominees

  • The premise of this fantasy is the story of the G.I. Joe team, led by Duke, and their "fight for freedom wherever there is trouble" against the evil Cobra Commander and his Cobra force.

    HASBRO: PLEASE DON’T BOYCOTT US

  • Cries that we're "Surrendering to terrorism" if this fantasy is at all perturbed, is Neo-Con propaganda designed to shame and shut up Conservatives (because we know nothing at all will shame Leftists to get on the Bus).

    Sound Politics: Democrats May Be in a Quandary on Iraq

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