Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A frenzy supposed by ancient peoples to have been induced by nymphs.
  • noun An emotional frenzy.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun An ecstasy; a divine frenzy.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun rare A species of demoniac enthusiasm or possession coming upon one who had accidentally looked upon a nymph; ecstasy.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A frenzied state of (usually erotic) emotion, especially concerning something or someone unattainable.

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

  • noun a frenzy of emotion; as for something unattainable

Etymologies

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

[From nympholept.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

nympho- + -lepsy

Examples

  • A terrible malady is she, a malady the ancients knew of and called nympholepsy -- a beautiful name evocative and symbolic of its ideal aspect,

    Confessions of a Young Man

  • The word we want is "nympholepsy", which doesn't quite mean what you think it means.

    The Guardian World News

  • London, 1821, entitled _Two Pairs of Historical Portraits_, in which an attempt is made to trace a minute resemblance between the characters and careers of Rienzi and the First Napoleon.)] [494] {415} [The word "nympholepsy" may be paraphrased as "ecstatic vision."

    The Works of Lord Byron. Vol. 2

  • Here he is, at last, an admitted pedophile—no longer “an artist and a madman, a creature of infinite melancholy,” who seeks to fancy up his crime by calling it nympholepsy instead.

    Archive 2009-02-01

  • The seduction of Lolita exists in discrete moments that are sufficient in themselves to constitute the heaven and hell of nympholepsy.

    The genius of page breaks

  • Here he is, at last, an admitted pedophile—no longer “an artist and a madman, a creature of infinite melancholy,” who seeks to fancy up his crime by calling it nympholepsy instead.

    The murderer’s fancy style

  • It is this repetition—not the nympholepsy itself, but the endless recurrence of its self-imprisoning instants—that eventually dooms and destroys Humbert.

    Archive 2009-10-01

  • The seduction of Lolita exists in discrete moments that are sufficient in themselves to constitute the heaven and hell of nympholepsy.

    Archive 2009-10-01

  • It is this repetition—not the nympholepsy itself, but the endless recurrence of its self-imprisoning instants—that eventually dooms and destroys Humbert.

    The genius of page breaks

  • How often have _we_ -- martyrs to a hopeless nympholepsy -- strayed through that piazza, at the self same hour -- there deemed that the heart would break -- but never thought that it might slowly wither.

    A Love Story

Comments

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  • The folks in a mystical cult

    Sip potions to help them exult.

    The visions adepts see

    Provoke nympholepsy,

    Which is the desired result.

    June 29, 2017