Definition of illusion in English:

illusion

noun

  • 1An instance of a wrong or misinterpreted perception of a sensory experience:

    ‘stripes embellish the surface to create the illusion of various wood-grain textures’
    • ‘One might suppose that this preview allowed participants to notice and adjust for the effect of the illusion.’
    • ‘In addition, not all illusions are completely understood.’
    • ‘The pub was decked up with a lot of theme decor and bizarre visual illusions.’
    • ‘When we peer out into the world is all that we see potentially a confabulation - a grand visual illusion staged by our brain?’
    • ‘This artist is known for creating the most amazing visual illusions.’
    • ‘Pilots are also trained to understand and avoid visual illusions, perceptions that differ from the way things really are.’
    • ‘The new technology uses a principle known as ‘wave field synthesis’ to create complex audio illusions for everyone within a defined space.’
    • ‘Depersonalization, heightened perception, especially to light and sound, and illusions are also commonly reported.’
    • ‘Also, don't forget to take a look at the optical illusions books below.’
    • ‘In any case, puzzle fanatics will enjoy the many riddles, illusions, cryptograms and other mind-benders offered for analysis.’
    • ‘They also experienced visual illusions such as real objects appearing to move or pulsate.’
    • ‘They may have been linked to various illusions that can be experienced.’
    • ‘Vivid hallucinations and delirious illusions may also occur.’
    • ‘The intoxicated state is characterized by illusions, visual hallucinations and bodily distortions.’
    • ‘The same is true for visual illusions, hypoxia and other factors affecting interpretation as the brain receives information from the eyes.’
    • ‘For more illusions and to understand the science behind them I highly recommend visiting this amazing website.’
    • ‘In this sense, the illusions that are attributed to the senses always involve false judgement.’
    • ‘Hallucinations and illusions are disturbances of perception that are common in people suffering from schizophrenia.’
    • ‘I wowed him with an illusion involving a silk scarf and a cup with a false bottom.’
    • ‘Her photos are viewed through an old stereoscope, which creates wonderful visual illusions.’
    mirage, hallucination, apparition, phantasm, phantom, vision, spectre, fantasy, figment of the imagination, will-o'-the-wisp, trick of the light
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    1. 1.1 A deceptive appearance or impression:
      ‘the illusion of family togetherness’
      • ‘Unfortunately, Britain and Europe are all too eager to pretend that such illusions are reality.’
      • ‘The progress of the film is a progress through illusion and deception toward reality and truth.’
      • ‘Behind the veil of these illusions lay a harsher reality.’
      • ‘Its carbon arc lamp doesn't shoot light through filmstrips to create the illusion of movement.’
      • ‘That, of course, adds to the illusion surrounding the arrangement, which is the idea.’
      • ‘So what if the idea is to create the illusion of total surveillance, so that people behave?’
      • ‘Or at least give the illusion of doing so, until a better idea comes along.’
      • ‘The trick to create the illusion of longer legs is to draw the eye upwards.’
      • ‘However, it also caused an illusion of repetition for items presented only once.’
      • ‘Young men being excited about war is nothing new - and having their illusions shattered by the reality of it is nothing new either.’
      • ‘History was a realm of illusions, a dream or a nightmare from which the wise seek to awaken.’
      • ‘Does that mean that neuroscience tells us that free will is an illusion?’
      • ‘There is something about the screen that gives the illusion of trustworthiness.’
      • ‘However, you will live in a metaphysical world, where reality and illusions will be so skewed that they will appear to be identical.’
      • ‘All my illusions of a perfect family had been shattered.’
      • ‘Both audio and visuals support the illusion that Becker is trying to create.’
      • ‘The apparent relativity of the moral impulse is an illusion which is created by the mind for the mind's own purposes.’
      • ‘But even today, Romanians still live with the realities behind the illusion.’
      • ‘As illusions fade and the reality of East Timor's predicament becomes apparent, social tensions and class antagonisms will rapidly deepen.’
      • ‘As an historian - certainly as a woman - she had not the slightest romantic illusions about the realities of human life during the long childhood of the species.’
      appearance, impression, imitation, semblance, pretence, sham
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    2. 1.2 A false idea or belief:
      ‘he had no illusions about the trouble she was in’
      • ‘Great acting skills may not be one of his attributes, but then Fardeen is at least not under any false illusions.’
      • ‘People do buy into the illusion that they can experience a little dusting of celeb glamour by lining the pockets of already rich stars.’
      • ‘We were at least under the illusion that we could have an idea, have a style, that wouldn't immediately be sold back to us.’
      • ‘I watch icons smash and belief systems shatter and the illusions which have poisoned my mind begin to retreat.’
      • ‘Our world will appear to crumble as we know it, as distractions, false voices, illusions and misconceptions will be taken away from us.’
      • ‘To successfully pass this test we must face it properly without false illusions.’
      • ‘Its best to let go expectations and illusions about yourself.’
      • ‘Many people today, however, cling to the illusion that gaining material wealth will be the key to all their problems.’
      • ‘We've got to somehow - my own preference is to say we have to understand how we got to the illusion.’
      • ‘Man and house are thus a perfect match, as all the characters trapped in their own illusions and false expectations of Sancher end up more hurt than healed.’
      • ‘Because if He wouldn't do that, we'd just remain stuck in our illusions, unclear on the idea that God can do it all.’
      • ‘Iyer spoke of ideas and illusions of India, of the mundane in one locale becoming the exotic in another.’
      • ‘Liberalism now needs to be liberated from many of its own illusions and delusions.’
      • ‘But the biggest illusion is the idea that travelling on your own is all that wonderful.’
      • ‘Believing that our beliefs are illusions, however, is self-refuting.’
      • ‘Participating in new formations alongside leading figures who still have reformist ideas, it is claimed, will spread illusions in people with damaging politics.’
      • ‘‘I don't have any illusions about the importance of writing stories,’ he added.’
      • ‘He gives us a more troubled world, one with few illusions but still possessed of ideals, as Hitler's war machine draws its net around what is left of Europe.’
      • ‘The library and police department also keep his number on file, but he doesn't harbor any illusions about his popularity.’
      • ‘And yet the abundance of God is a belief that both consoles our fears and deconstructs the illusions that hold us captive.’
      delusion, misapprehension, misconception, deception, false impression, mistaken impression
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Phrases

  • be under the illusion that

    • Believe mistakenly that:

      ‘the world is under the illusion that the original painting still hangs in the Winter Palace’
      • ‘The Popular Unity's supporters were under the illusion that once in power it would fulfil the promise of profound political and socio-economic change.’
      • ‘Progressives have been under the illusion that if only people understood the facts, we'd be fine.’
      • ‘Postulating that state leads you to surmise that because this disavowal operation swings into place, the spectator must be under the illusion that what she sees at a fiction film is the real thing.’
      • ‘Many farmers were under the illusion that an accident can not and will not happen on their farm.’
      • ‘If this woman is under the illusion that telling truth to power comes without costs, she doesn't deserve to represent any one.’
      • ‘I was under the illusion that things were getting better.’
      • ‘But nobody, including the minister, was under the illusion that this was anything other than pathetic.’
      • ‘We were under the illusion that you could open the floodgates just as much as we wanted and no more.’
      • ‘‘No one should be under the illusion that because a plan exists in one form today that it will be that way forever,’ he said.’
      • ‘None of the audiences that came to John Bentley's School Hall for the four nights last week were under the illusion that the show was anything but amateur.’
  • be under no illusion (or illusions)

    • Be fully aware of the true state of affairs.

      • ‘We had our fair share of the game which is pleasing from my point of view but I am under no illusions how tough my job still is.’
      • ‘The 35-year-old is under no illusions about his situation.’
      • ‘Although young, Mr Bowen was under no illusions about what he would have to face on D-Day, not least because he was in the company of battle-hardened veterans.’
      • ‘In his writing on India, Marx shows himself under no illusions concerning the brutal and mercenary nature of British rule.’
      • ‘With what's happened over the last 12 months we're under no illusions that we're going in as favourites to win the competition.’
      • ‘We are under no illusions about the challenge ahead.’
      • ‘The 8-6 win was hard-fought and Ford is under no illusions that his side might have to grind out another win today.’
      • ‘She says she has been greatly impressed with the efficiency of the Dundee operation but is under no illusions about the challenges facing a factory on the northern fringes of Europe.’
      • ‘But I'm under no illusions, it could be taken away at any point, so I just grab it with both hands.’
      • ‘Indeed, she is under no illusions that, left to their own democratic devices, women would freely choose the Utopia she has in mind.’

Origin

Middle English (in the sense ‘deceiving, deception’): via Old French from Latin illusio(n-), from illudere to mock, from in- against + ludere play.

Pronunciation:

illusion

/ɪˈluːʒ(ə)n/