Definition of fascination in English:



  • 1[mass noun] The power to fascinate someone; the quality of being fascinating:

    ‘television has always held a fascination for me’
    • ‘Nevertheless, the topic has some fascination.’
    • ‘The preserved hull and associated museum will continue to hold a fascination for maritime and terrestrial archaeologists.’
    • ‘The fascination about this musical is the exciting rock rhythms and the memorable, lyrical melodies.’
    • ‘Part of the fascination has been the use of many varied mathematical tools to solve the practical problems in coding.’
    • ‘The snakes and spiders had a strange fascination.’
    • ‘Indeed, this lack of direct descendants is not least among the fascinations provided by "Into the Light."’
    • ‘For Fuhrman, the emergence of poetry as fruitful untruth is a source of fascination.’
    • ‘It is a game that provides an endless source of fascination as well as fuelling the odd argument.’
    • ‘Much of the fascination Schwarzkogler holds is due to the sheer lack of available information.’
    • ‘The Himalayan region has long held a particular fascination for the western mind.’
    • ‘Certainly, spices added flavour interest to a dish, but their fascination resided primarily in their symbolic value.’
    • ‘And the strange thing is that her life holds as much fascination for us here in Ireland as it does for the public across the water.’
    • ‘It remains one of the best works ever written on the fascination that communism holds for generations of intellectuals.’
    • ‘The idea of "document" seems to have a promising fascination for the twenty-first century psyche.’
    • ‘Some 80 years after its initial release, this wildly over-scaled silent melodrama retains a certain hothouse fascination.’
    • ‘How he maintains his athletic prowess is a subject of fascination among his fans and consternation among his opponents.’
    • ‘In the 1970s, the enthusiasm of many obstetricians for electronic foetal monitoring was in fact a real fascination.’
    • ‘It does have a horrible fascination - the ultimate reality show in action.’
    • ‘That first good bullet, bright as a newly minted coin, has always been an item of fascination to me.’
    • ‘However I can understand that there is a fascination in motor bikes and quads for young people.’
    interest, preoccupation, passion, obsession, compulsion, captivation, enchantment
    allure, lure, allurement
    charm, attraction, intrigue, attractiveness, appeal, magnetism, pull, draw
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 The state of being fascinated:
      ‘he had a lifelong fascination with science’
      • ‘My fascination with on-stage French snow may seem strange.’
      • ‘I suppose we all have a fascination with death.’
      • ‘A cheerful site for those of us with morbid fascination.’
      • ‘His true fascination was with the exploration of human character through facial expression.’
      • ‘It was the fascination with the poem's musicality that really got Ellison interested in writing.’
      • ‘The battles between the Rock and the Cobra spurred the fascination of the public.’
      • ‘Part of the public's fascination lay in the author's somewhat eccentric lifestyle.’
      • ‘This fascination with instant celebrity, focused on everyday people who find fame overnight, has been fueled by reality TV.’
      • ‘I watched all the big fish with morbid fascination.’
      • ‘Several children remained politely outside, staring in silent fascination at this new visitor in their midst.’
      • ‘There was, however, more than this in his fascination with Greek tragedy.’
      • ‘I have always had a fascination for botanic gardens.’
      • ‘My fascination with this odd subject is hard to explain.’
      • ‘Several band members are historians and their fascination with Bulgaria's past drew the group together.’
      • ‘Their adventurous and inquisitive nature explains their fascination with the ancient beauty and splendor of Egypt.’
      • ‘The society hopes the exhibits will explain the fascination steam has aroused in the minds of the people.’
      • ‘Like a lot of westerners, they had a fascination with the good life.’
      • ‘He also expanded his concept of history into the contemporary period through a fascination with international affairs.’
      • ‘A casual view of some of our articles might suggest a morbid fascination with the dead.’
      • ‘The 65-year-old Rolling Stones singer has now revealed a fascination for Latin, the ancient language.’


The two senses of fascination each take a different preposition. A person has a fascination with something they are very interested in (her fascination with the royal family), whereas something interesting holds a fascination for a person (words have always held a fascination for me). The Oxford English Corpus shows that the distinction is often blurred today, but it should be maintained in careful writing