Definition of obeah in US English:


(also obi)


  • A kind of sorcery practiced especially in the Caribbean.

    • ‘Many Creoles and Garifuna believe in obeah, or witchcraft.’
    • ‘Some still fear the African-derived black magic called obeah that is common in the Caribbean region.’
    • ‘Informal social control occurs through peer pressure, gossip, and fear of harmful magic known as obeah.’
    • ‘You see somebody with a beautiful religious artifact, and you don't want to touch it - you're afraid of some obeah jumping out of it to get you.’
    • ‘Although it has been illegal for a long time, obeah, the traditional witchcraft of the Caribbean, still exists.’


Akan, from bayi ‘sorcery’.