Definition of supernatural in US English:



  • 1(of a manifestation or event) attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding or the laws of nature.

    ‘a supernatural being’
    • ‘This collection represents the more bizarre and supernatural episodes produced in the series.’
    • ‘These social and supernatural forces have come to represent anxieties and energies restrained, repressed, or dismissed in modern Japanese and Euro-American society.’
    • ‘At one stage, he finds himself hot on the trail of the mysterious, possibly supernatural, killer, drawing himself into a disturbing and haunting climactic experience.’
    • ‘As critics have often pointed out, this violence does not stem from supernatural forces but from material, legal, economic, and social realities and inequalities.’
    • ‘More incredibly, despite the supernatural nature of the show and carnival freaks, this is one of the most realistic and believable groups of characters I have ever seen on television.’
    • ‘In broad terms, the border between moral influence and supernatural transformation was a porous one in Victorian culture, one that was crossed and re-crossed with regularity.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, supernatural occurrences begin plaguing the boat, starting with a record player that turns itself on at will.’
    • ‘The sun itself was worshipped and regarded as a supernatural force, and all temples contained a shrine to the sun, Ra, or both.’
    • ‘But music continued to obsess him; in many of his stories, he links it with supernatural forces.’
    • ‘And with life-drained bodies turning up around the countryside, it's clear that some supernatural force is at work.’
    • ‘However, the similarity lies in that they both describe mysterious and supernatural events as they occur, both of which remain resolved at the story's end.’
    • ‘He is a monster with the unique combination of supernatural powers and extraordinary human characteristics that makes him a threat to humans everywhere.’
    • ‘These theaters of anxiety illustrate collective helplessness in the face of unmanageable man-made, natural or supernatural forces.’
    • ‘There are no supernatural events, wild chases through the jungle, superpowers, or other falsehoods.’
    • ‘The court believes that supernatural forces manipulated the downfall of this picture.’
    • ‘This language suggests an object that actually radiates a supernatural force, as if through a halo-effect that influences all who come in contact with its great spirit.’
    • ‘You really get the feeling that uncontrollable supernatural forces have hijacked her life.’
    • ‘They tend to sudden deaths, supposedly via supernatural happenings.’
    • ‘So whenever an overly supernatural event happens, it's almost a distraction, rather than the thrilling surprise the creators were hoping for.’
    • ‘These are traditional hunters, who harness supernatural forces to counter the terrors of the bush, whose ancient traditions are being bizarrely reinvented in the modern world and whose music has had a profound impact on African pop.’
    paranormal, psychic, magic, magical, occult, mystic, mystical, miraculous, superhuman, supernormal, hypernormal, extramundane
    ghostly, phantom, spectral, magical, mystic, other-worldly, unearthly, unnatural, unreal, mysterious, fabulous
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Unnaturally or extraordinarily great.
      ‘a woman of supernatural beauty’


the supernatural
  • Manifestations or events considered to be of supernatural origin, such as ghosts.

    • ‘Both country houses are associated with the supernatural.’
    • ‘There's a sprinkling of the supernatural toward the end, as well, which livens up the story a bit but does not make up for the predictable and shamelessly heartstring-tugging ending.’
    • ‘The point, however, is to remember that the medieval Japanese, with all their fears and superstitions, did make a clear distinction between the natural and the supernatural.’
    • ‘Composite creatures based on the lion - for example, sphinxes, griffins, or horned and winged lions - place the imagery in the realm of the supernatural.’
    • ‘Some of the most poorly received episodes have been the ones that strayed into the supernatural.’
    • ‘From an early age he had been interested in the supernatural (later in Theosophy), and from this grew a concern with the spiritual symbolism of colour.’
    • ‘In reality, however, it's a courtroom drama with a twinge of the supernatural (most of which occurs during flash-backs).’
    • ‘A robust grandfather, once the bane of Hollywood screenwriting, regales his frail, fidgety grandson with horrible tales of the macabre and the supernatural.’
    • ‘Complicating the film visually is the always shifting point of view and the issue of reality versus memory versus the supernatural.’
    • ‘All but Brendan, the youngish owner and barkeep, have tales to spin: tales of the supernatural in which they were involved but that may be merely delusional.’
    • ‘A system of belief can exist without a recognition of the supernatural.’
    • ‘They're populated by gentry, religious, working people, strangers, supernaturals, and an occasional chieftain, and at some point, everyone dances.’
    • ‘Seems like our supermen and women can't really prove themselves worthy unless they do it against creatures and creations from the realm of the superstitious and the supernatural.’
    • ‘The little wizard's popularity is also attributed to the empathy that many Japanese children can feel towards his hardships at school and his fascination with the supernatural.’
    • ‘The device was not new to Copanec monuments of the eighth century; the inscription of Copan Stela 6 recounts a royal ritual in 682 at which a company of ‘four lords, four young ones ‘- perhaps deities or supernaturals - looked on.’’
    • ‘Despite a tendency to over-dramatise, this is yet another supernatural spook-fest which will chill and entertain - and hopefully won't prove too offensive to the real-life inspirations.’
    • ‘The use of the supernatural in the witches, the visions, the ghost, and the apparitions is a key element in making the concept of the play work and in making the play interesting.’
    • ‘Both Apache Crown Dancers and Navajo Yeibichei dancers wear masks and sing partially in falsetto or in voices imitating the supernaturals.’
    • ‘David has recently written a book on psychic phenomena from the standpoint of suspicious skeptic of the supernatural.’
    • ‘These horror types may be monsters, demons, angels, psychotics, and/or the supernatural.’