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Nov 30, 2012
This week's theme
Illustrated words

This week's words
bursiform
concinnity
lachrymal
wassail
phantasmagoria

phantasmagoria
Illustration: Leah Palmer Preiss

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

phantasmagoria

PRONUNCIATION:
(fan-taz-muh-GOR-ee-uh)

MEANING:
noun:
1. A shifting scene made up of many elements.
2. A sequence of fantastic imagery, illusions, etc.

ETYMOLOGY:
From French fantasmagorie, from fantasme (phantasm), perhaps combined with Greek agora (assembly). Earliest documented use: 1802.

NOTES:
In the late 18th and 19th century, use of a magic lantern (an early form of slide projector) to display fantastic images was popular. It was known as a phantasmagoria and was first exhibited in London in 1802.

USAGE:
"We are increasingly immersed in a phantasmagoria of screens and streams and tunes."
Tom & Jeanne Lombardo; Mind Flight: A Journey Into the Future; Xlibris; 2011.

See more usage examples of phantasmagoria in Vocabulary.com's dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
Nothing ruins a face so fast as double-dealing. Your face telling one story to the world. Your heart yanking your face to pieces, trying to let the truth be known. Jessamyn West, novelist (1902-1984)

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