Saturday, December 31, 2011


A line taken out of context, from our dictionary of magic words:

“Persian poets say that Satan is sustained by his memory of the sound of God’s voice when he said ‘Begone!’"

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Magical Word is the Chanted Word

"'This is really a magical revolution', [W.B.] Yeats concluded, 'for the magical word is the chanted word.'" —Sean Pryor, W.B. Yeats, Ezra Pound, and the Poetry of Paradise (2011)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Designed to Hoodwink the Public

A line taken out of context, from our dictionary of magic words:

“It smacked of impenetrable mumbo jumbo, designed to hoodwink the public.” —Ron Chernow, Alexander Hamilton (2004)

Saturday, December 17, 2011


“You'll tell me the magic word, then?”
Morgan relented. “It's Tohin-ontan.”
—Julie Tetel, Sweet Sarah Ross (2011)

Monday, December 12, 2011

A Door to an Alternative Reality

"When we find a magical word like epopt or construe words to bring a surprise in our life, like placing an unexpected ad in a newspaper, we find that a word can be more than a representation of what we already know. It can serve as a door to an alternative reality."
—Bradford Keeney, The Flying Drum: The Mojo Doctor's Guide to Creating Magic in Your Life (2011)

Thursday, December 8, 2011


"When love reaches you, it is a magical feeling. It is a magical word, 'love', in my language and in all languages: amore, sayang, dragoste, liefde, amour, upendo , bhalobashi. They all have a special ring to them." —Robert F. Luce, Fall Into the Ebony (2011)

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Strung Together Fantastically

"The hymns from the Rig-veda are no longer used with any regard to their sense, but the verses are taken away from their context and strung together fantastically, because they all contain some magical word, or because the scheme of their meters, when arranged according to the increasing or decreasing number of syllables, resembles a thunderbolt wherewith the sacrificer may slay his foes, or for some equally valid reason."
—E. J. Rapson, Ancient India: From the Earliest Times to the First Century AD (1914)

Thursday, December 1, 2011


A line taken out of context, from our dictionary of magic words:

“Voilà!” she repeated, perhaps with a hint more insistence, when the magician failed to take her cue.