from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A religious cult, having elements of sorcery, ritual dance and fetishes, from Brazil

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A popular dance music of Brazil, derived from the practices of the macumba religious cult.
  • n. a Brazilian religious cult of African origin; combines voodoo elements with singing a chanting and dancing.
  • n. darling; -- an Irish term of address expressing affection.

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

  • n. popular dance music of Brazil; derived from the practices of the macumba religious cult
  • n. a Brazilian religious cult of African origin; combines voodoo elements with singing and chanting and dancing
  • n. (Brazil) followers of a religious cult of African origin


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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  • The arrangement of glass cases along the sides, the alchemical altar in the center, the liturgy of a civilized eighteenth-century macumba--this was not accidental but symbolic, a strategem.

    --Umberto Eco, 1988, Foucault's Pendulum, p. 13

    September 29, 2008

  • "The Nordestino religion, called among other things macumba or candomblé, is a patchwork of voodoo, spiritism, animism and debased Catholicism, but the central ritual is cleansing.

    - 'The São Francisco', Germaine Greer in The Madwoman's Underclothes.

    September 1, 2008

  • "The Americas were my district, a territory where you made a pile of money in a month of sweat and lost it in a night of gambling and women, where the Southern Cross blinked out its torrid message in the hot sky—WELCOME TO SOUTH AMERICA, CONTINENT OF CONTRASTS AND ROMANCE—not my kind of territory at first, hard and gritty and tough on the liver for a pure white man, yet once it got in your blood, you couldn't get over it even if you lived five lives more, because that macumba magic gets under the skin, those nights on the sand of the copacabana with the jet black mountains at your back and that purple ocean before your eyes, savage and sexy like a jaguar prowling for porterhouse steaks in a summer rain, or out there on the grassy flatness they call the pampas, under the stars so close down to a man he can touch 'em with his fingertips, so close he'd have to crawl on his belly just to get to his blanket spaced between sky and earth ... Well, sirs, a man gets to love it so much it near spoils 'im for any other life."

    -Tintin in the New World by Frederic Tuten, p 168

    July 10, 2008