Definition of ecstasy in English:



  • 1An overwhelming feeling of great happiness or joyful excitement.

    ‘there was a look of ecstasy on his face’
    ‘they went into ecstasies over the view’
    • ‘His body twitched from the sheer ecstasy of it all.’
    • ‘The day I discovered that someone had linked to my blog, I experienced the ultimate ecstasy.’
    • ‘At that moment, I closed my eyes, every feeling of happiness and ecstasy going through me immediately.’
    • ‘That weird feeling of ecstasy overwhelmed her and her mind became foggy for a moment.’
    • ‘The temptation to let the heady ecstasy of power get the better of you is self-evident.’
    • ‘The two seconds of palpable ecstasy dissipates to a sudden realization that the action is over.’
    • ‘The last two races were auction races with serious betting creating ecstasy.’
    • ‘But what had me really sighing with ecstasy was the yam and meat hotpot.’
    • ‘We look at each other, and I notice there are tears in his eyes from sheer ecstasy.’
    • ‘It was breathtaking, heart-stopping stuff with an ending to send the York City faithful into ecstasy.’
    • ‘There is a freedom, thrill and ecstasy associated with being employed which is indescribable.’
    • ‘Throwing my head back at the sheer ecstasy of being alive, I howled at the moon.’
    • ‘While continentals swoon with ecstasy over white asparagus, it is the green spears we crave.’
    • ‘When the hymns started, Jimmy's expression changed to one of ecstasy and transport.’
    • ‘For a few minutes he felt pure joy and ecstasy even though his fate told a much different story.’
    • ‘A news photographer took a picture of a man waving a flag in ecstasy, which was published on the front page.’
    • ‘Look at the canvass after a couple of days when he is through and you wouldn't help uttering sighs of ecstasy.’
    • ‘Community Planning is in ecstasy over the spending increases they can expect from the new council.’
    • ‘As you filed out of the stadium that night the sense of ecstasy and optimism was almost overwhelming.’
    • ‘As the song and the dance went on their hearts were filled with ecstasy and tears of joy flowed from their eyes.’
    rapture, bliss, elation, euphoria, cloud nine, seventh heaven, transports, rhapsodies
    View synonyms
  • 2An emotional or religious frenzy or trancelike state, originally one involving an experience of mystic self-transcendence.

    • ‘Her afflictions, visions, and ecstasies began to spread her fame on the winds of the Catholic Awakening movement that was gaining force at the time.’
    • ‘He combined a Catholic devotion to the sacraments of the Church with a Pentecostal welcoming of healings, ecstasies and Low Church spontaneity.’
    • ‘The Book of Margery Kempe, the spiritual autobiography of the wife of a Lynn burgess, exemplified the virtues which lay men and women sought, and the revelations, visions, and ecstasies by which they came to possess them.’
    • ‘Stigmatics often receive religious visions or ecstasies, having visions of Christ and various saints, and also ‘re-living’ or seeing parts of Christ's passion and sharing in his suffering.’
    • ‘Spiritual ecstasy must not come at the cost of dignity.’
  • 3An amphetamine-based synthetic drug with euphoric and hallucinatory effects, originally promoted as an adjunct to psychotherapy.

    Also called MDMA
    • ‘Last year he was in court again on charges of conspiring to supply ecstasy and amphetamines.’
    • ‘Initially, the autopsy results indicated that his internal injuries were thought to be from ingesting liquid ecstasy.’
    • ‘Police arrested him and found a tablet of ecstasy in his pocket.’
    • ‘A hit or two of ecstasy might cause more than just an overwhelming desire to dance the night away.’
    • ‘The recreational drug ecstasy is neurotoxic if taken in high enough doses.’


Late Middle English (in ecstasy (sense 2)): from Old French extasie, via late Latin from Greek ekstasis ‘standing outside oneself’, based on ek- ‘out’ + histanai ‘to place’.