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

  • adj. Of or relating to the partially conscious state that precedes complete awakening from sleep.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Referring to the state of consciousness before becoming completely awake.


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

From hypno- + Greek pompē, a sending away; see pomp.


  • Similar phenomena, so-called hypnopompic hallucinations, may occur on waking in both normal children and narcoleptics and reflect the continued activity of part of the dream system for a few minutes after waking.

    Solve Your Child’s Sleep Problems

  • I think that what's been lost sight of here is a psychological phenomenon known as hypnopompic or hypnagogic experiences, in which people do honestly hallucinate these things.

    CNN Transcript - Larry King Live: Are There Ghosts? - April 3, 2001

  • As far as I could reconstruct it afterwards, there'd been a loud noise in the flat below or above, which my dreaming mind had construed as someone in the bedroom, complete with hypnopompic hallucination of someone sitting on the bed and shaking it.

    Making Light: Open thread 136

  • Jenny woke up with a start and thought, hypnopompic hallucination?


  • In his immediate postoperative state, in what was neither a dream nor fantasy, but more akin to a prolonged series of hypnopompic hallucinations during a long period of waking up, this 50-plus - year-old man went through vivid images of lying on a concrete slab, while someone opened his heart and collected the blood in large pails and buckets at the side of the table.

    Dr. Leo Rangell: Music in the Head: Living at the Brain-Mind Border; Part 1

  • Because the existing word hypnagogic means “of, relating to, or occurring in the state of intermediate consciousness preceding sleep,” and hypnopompic means “of or relating to the partially conscious state that precedes complete awakening from sleep,” many people came up with hyp - coinages.

    Word Fugitives

  • I experienced some sort of hypnopompic episode last night.

    Archive 2006-08-01

  • Hypnagogic and hypnopompic hallucinations during sleep paralysis: Neurological and cultural construction of the nightmare.

    Born to Believe

  • She drifted into the last, hypnopompic layer of sleep, finding and losing dreams.

    The Year's Best Science Fiction 23rd Annual Collection

  • We are told to pay heed to the “interval between the waking-state and the sleeping-state,” the twilight states of mind psychology calls hypnogogic and hypnopompic.

    Experiencing the Next World Now


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  • A hypnopompic state (or hypnopomp) is the state of consciousness leading out of sleep, a term coined by the spiritualist Frederick Myers. Its twin is the hypnagogic state at sleep onset; though often conflated, the two states are not identical. The hypnagogic state is rational waking cognition trying to make sense of non-linear images and associations; the hypnopompic state is emotional and credulous dreaming cognition trying to make sense of real world stolidity. They have a different phenomenological character. Depressed frontal lobe function in the first few minutes after waking – known as "sleep inertia" – causes slowed reaction time and impaired short-term memory. Sleepers often wake confused, or speak without making sense, a phenomenon the psychologist Peter McKeller calls "hypnopompic speech." ~Wikipedia

    January 19, 2009

  • He woke fitfully, from a dream where his work had gone terribly wrong. He was still hypnopompic. Elevated pulse and damp skin. A cold process throbbed just below his sternum.

    --Richard Powers, 2007, The Echo Maker, p. 164

    November 7, 2008

  • oo, good word, indeed. I knew hypnogogic but strangely not this one. ...I think I'll go add lucid dreaming to my word list now.

    January 4, 2007

  • Beautiful word. Relates to the partially conscious state just before completely awakening from sleep. It's the opposite of hypnogogic which is state of partial consciousness preceding sleep. Both are times for delicious reveries.

    January 4, 2007