One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A ghost or other supernatural being supposedly responsible for physical disturbances such as making loud noises and throwing objects about.
- ‘On Sunday, the activity slowed down a little and the poltergeist contented itself with breaking two more windows and by throwing ripe tomatoes with excellent aim.’
- ‘In the opening episode, Fred Mumford returns from the spirit world and opens the agency Rentaghost, which offers ghosts and poltergeists for hire on a daily or weekly rental.’
- ‘We can even dismiss him as so far away from our own time - this man grew up in a Germany haunted by witches and poltergeists, and threw inkpots at the devil - that we simply cannot understand him at all.’
- ‘In his seventeenth-century work Saducismus Triumphatus Joseph Glanvil saw poltergeists, apparitions, and other phenomena as evidence of a spiritual world.’
- ‘Roll and Hamilton-Parker do not believe that poltergeists are ghosts or conscious entities.’
- ‘Whatever ghosts and poltergeists may be, it is increasingly apparent that they are facets of the same phenomenon.’
- ‘Noisy ghosts are known as poltergeists (literally, noisy spirits).’
- ‘The 16th and 17th centuries did see a number of poltergeist stories; poltergeists could be the spirits of the dead, or could be devils or intrusive witches whose spirits could walk abroad separately from their bodies.’
- ‘Peter's 18th title is full of local flavour and includes stories of ghosts, witchcraft and mermaids, close encounters, poltergeists and alien big cats.’
- ‘Psychic investigators supposed Gef was a poltergeist or perhaps a ghost.’
- ‘There have been countless tales of haunted houses - old buildings, ranging from medieval castles to twentieth-century hotels, plagued by ghosts, spirits, poltergeists, what-have-you.’
- ‘Our good friend Massimo Polidoro, head of the Italian Committee for the Control of Paranormal Claims went there to observe, and he soon ruled out demons or poltergeists.’
- ‘There were no reports of supernatural sounds, translucent ghosts, or mischievous poltergeists, let alone greenskinned reptoids in an undergraduate girls dorm!’
- ‘But those who do believe in the ghosts agree that the theater is not haunted by a poltergeist or mean spirit.’
- ‘Therefore, the explanation of poltergeist cases is not, as the term poltergeist suggests, intelligent behavior by an immaterial being, a ghost.’
- ‘In 1848 the Fox sisters produced the poltergeist manifestations that led to the spiritualist movement; even if they were frauds, that too is Neptunian.’
- ‘Specifically, in both Gallup and Newport's and Ross and Joshi's studies, ‘contact with ghosts’ was reported more frequently than physical manifestations associated with poltergeists.’
- ‘This covers all manner of weirdness from frog falls, ghosts and poltergeists, levitation, UFOs, lost civilisations and displaced animals (like big cats stalking the British countryside).’
- ‘After he attributes the resurrection appearances to poltergeists, and calls Jesus a levitating ghost, he's finished with the topic.’
- ‘Must we explain ghosts, poltergeists, reincarnation, and the healing power of crystals?’
Mid 19th century: from German Poltergeist, from poltern ‘create a disturbance’ + Geist ‘ghost’.
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