One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1The action or an act of pouring a liquid on to something or someone. Now rare.
2The pouring of water on the body or a part of the body for therapeutic purposes; an instance of this. Frequently with distinguishing word specifying the temperature of the water, especially in "cold affusion". Also figurative. Now historical.
3Christian Church. The administration of baptism by pouring or sprinkling water over a person's head (opposed to immersion and aspersion); an instance of this.
Early 17th century (in an earlier sense). From (i) French affusion parenchyma;.
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